Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has urged Pakistan and India to find a solution of their dispute over Kashmir region through dialogues.
“We are watching with concern the tension and loss of life on the Line of Control. Kashmir problem should be resolved through dialogue between Pakistan and India within the framework of relevant UN resolutions and by taking into consideration the demands of the people in Kashmir," he said, during a joint press conference with Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday.
Erdogan arrived in Pakistan on a two-day official visit on Wednesday.
“The troubles experienced by our brothers and sisters in Kashmir and the increasing tension along the Line of Control have reached an extent that cannot be ignored,” Erdogan said.
Kashmir region is at the centre of a decades-old rivalry between the Pakistan and India. The both countries stake a claim over the territory since the end of British colonial rule in 1947.
Tensions flared up along the disputed Kashmir border in recent weeks following an attack on an Indian army base in September that killed 19 soldiers.
Sharif thanked Erdogan for his support over the Kashmir issue.
Recalling Pakistan’s support in various instances including earthquake in 1999, Erdogan thanked Pakistan for its efforts to help Turkey in the fight against the Fetullah Terrorist Organisation (FETO). The group is accused of carrying out the failed coup of July 15 in which Turkey suffered 248 losses and 2193 injuries.
“Since the very beginning, Pakistan has taken the necessary measures to eliminate the Fetullah Terrorist Organisation which poses a threat to Pakistan’s security and public order,” said Erdogan.
“It has now demanded FETO-linked persons to leave the country by November 20. As far as we can see, this organisation can no longer stay in Pakistan, too.”
On Thursday, Pakistan asked around 400 people, 28 Turkish teachers and their families, linked with the FETO to leave the country by November 20.
“Similarly, we will not leave Pakistan alone in its fight against terror. We are determined to provide the necessary support,” Erdogan said.
Turkey and Pakistan enjoy close historical ties. Next year will mark the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said that the Pakistani government has decided to celebrate the event in “a befitting way.”
Both the countries released a joint communiqué at the end of the two-day visit by President Erdogan.
Both governments expressed their determination to “continue their strong mutual support for each other on issues of core national interest, and in defence of the peace and prosperity of the two nations,” the communiqué said.
“Pakistan and Turkey agreed to develop a comprehensive, long-term and forward-looking framework for defence cooperation between the two countries besides broadening the frequency and scope of bilateral consultations on foreign ministers,” it added.