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Terror is out of Turkey's agenda, Turkish Premier says

Anadolu Agency WORLD
Published May 29,2018

Terrorism is out of Turkey's agenda, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said Tuesday.

"When I took the office of the prime minister on May 24, 2016, I promised that separatist terror would be dropped out of the nation's agenda," Binali Yıldırım told a rally of the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party in southeastern Siirt province.

"Today, terrorism is out of Turkey's agenda," he added.

Dubbing the PKK terrorist organization as a "project" designed to harm Turkey, Yıldırım said the group was driven by "external forces".

Turkey has long criticized the U.S. for supporting the YPG/PKK terror group under the name of SDF, which is considered by Ankara as the Syrian offshoot of PKK.

PKK has waged a more than 30-year terror campaign against the Turkish state that has resulted in some 40,000 deaths.

Washington views the SDF as a "reliable partner" in its fight against Daesh and continues to provide it with arms and equipment in the face of strong objections by Turkey.

Also praising religious and ethnic diversity in Turkey as "richness", Yıldırım said Turkey would make no compromise regarding rights and freedoms.

"Be proud of your Kurdish [identity], and if you are Arab, take pride in your Arab [identity]. But, we should keep one thing in mind: Our flag with a crescent and star on it belongs to all of us," he said.