Zarif, Erdogan hold key talks in Ankara
Iran Press TV
Fri Aug 12, 2016 2:31PM
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan have held talks about key bilateral, regional and international issues.
The Iranian foreign minister met the Turkish president in Ankara on Friday in the fist visit by a high-ranking Iranian dignitary to Turkey since the failed July 15 coup attempt in the country.
The meeting, which featured luncheon, lasted for more than three hours. No more details on the meeting or discussed issues have been released yet.
The meeting came after Zarif held talks with his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu and attended a joint press conference with him.
Iran, Turkey pledge to fight terrorism
During his joint presser with Cavusoglu, the Iranian foreign minister said Tehran and Ankara have a common goal to improve cooperation on the fight against terrorism and extremism despite their differences on some issues.
"The two countries have a common opinion and goal to jointly fight terrorism, extremism and sectarianism, and despite the existence of different views on some issues, we share a common stance on [protecting] Syria's territorial integrity" and fighting Daesh and Jabhat Fath al-Sham terrorists, Zarif said.
He emphasized that Iran "has always had positive dialogues with Turkey on the Syria subject," adding that Tehran and Ankara share the view that the Arab country's future must be decided by the Syrian people.
The top Iranian diplomat went on to say that Tehran would strengthen its cooperation with Ankara in different fields.
Zarif also hailed the improvement of Russia-Turkey relations and their new efforts to stem the conflict in Syria.
"We also have great ties with Russia on the [Syrian] issue and we believe that all parties must cooperate to provide security and peace and stop the conflicts" in the region, the Iranian foreign minister said, adding, "We are ready to co-operate with both Turkey and Syria on this issue."
Elsewhere in his remarks, Zarif congratulated the Turkish government and nation for successfully thwarting a coup attempt last month.
"I congratulate the Turkish nation for the defiance they showed against the coup-plotters," he said, adding, "They showed the people of the region that they would not allow democracy and their rights to be taken away from them through coups and the use of force."
On the night of July 15, a faction of the Turkish military declared itself in charge of the country. Tanks and helicopters were used by the renegade military personnel to fight government loyalists on the streets of the capital Ankara and the most populous city of Istanbul.
However, the coup attempt was suppressed as people turned out on the streets to support the incumbent government.
Shortly following the coup attempt, Zarif and Cavusoglu exchanged views on the foiled putsch in three separate phone calls.
In the Friday press conference, the Turkish foreign minister also said Iran and Turkey agree on a number of issues, "especially on Syrian territorial integrity."
"On some issues, we have different views but we have never cut dialogue. We have emphasized since the outset [of the crisis in Syria] the importance of the constructive role Iran plays for a permanent solution in Syria," he added.
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