HE the Turkish Foreign Minister: Today, we are very happy to welcome HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Qatar. In our talks, we have focused on many bilateral, regional and international issues, and on the volume of trade, which have reached between our two countries about one and a half billion dollars. We also focused on increasing the volume of trade exchanges and discussed many projects, mainly in the field of defense industries, as well as the current crisis in Libya.
We, in the two countries, agree to support the United Nations positions to resolve the crisis in Libya after the conflict has reached Tripoli, the capital of Libya, and support the international community and its positions with regard to the same issue. We know very well that this situation and the crisis in Libya are very threatening to Libya's future, and we strongly reject the military intervention to resolve this crisis. This crisis must be resolved in a political and diplomatic manner for the sake of the Libyan people and the future of Libya.
Regarding the latest developments in Afghanistan, especially the efforts of HH the Amir of Qatar in finding political solutions and playing a role in resolving the outstanding problems in Afghanistan, we strongly support the positions of HH the Amir and all political solutions in Afghanistan and participate in the United Nations military presence. In addition, we establish joint Turkish-Afghan projects in Afghanistan.
We also dealt with the Turkish-Qatari bilateral issues, and discussed the Palestinian cause in light of our shared desire to resolve the Palestinian issue politically and to achieve a just peace in Palestine. In addition, we share the same view on the Palestinian cause, and held extensive discussions on the Syrian crisis.
I thank my brother HE the Qatari foreign minister, and with pleasure, I give him the floor.
HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs: I always feel happy when I meet HE the Minister, whether in Turkey or Doha or on the sidelines of international forums, to exchange views on regional issues of mutual concern. In our meeting today, we discussed the development of the bilateral and strategic relations between Qatar and Turkey, which are continually developing in all sectors and fields. On the political and economic spheres, there is continuous coordination, exchange of views and common benefits for both peoples, especially in the economic field, and we are working to upgrade such continuous coordination between our two countries.
Of course, we discussed today some of the important regional issues and events that the Islamic world is going through today, and require more consultation and coordination from us as members in the international community.
In the beginning, I would like to express our gratitude and thanks for the role played by Turkey in leadership of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in light of these circumstances that are affecting our Islamic world. We continue to support the role of Turkey because of its central position in our Islamic world.
Today, we have also discussed the important issues that are rapidly developing in the Libyan conflict, especially the attack against the capital Tripoli by Haftar’s troops which is considered a transgression against the legitimacy of the government and a terrorist act against civilians.
After the ongoing efforts which are made by the government of national accord, which is recognized by the international community in accordance with the related resolutions of the Security Council, and all of the support that have been provided by the mission of the United Nations to reach a political solution, we discovered that someone wants to challenge the international will and violate international resolutions to dictate a status quo by force.
We call on the international community to have a firm stance in the face of these violations of the international law, not just in Libya, but also in all the regional issues in which the international humanitarian continues to be disrespected, and violated on daily basis.
We also discussed the latest developments in the Palestinian cause, especially the recent statements that provoked the feelings of the entire Arab world, when the Israeli Prime Minister demanded the annexation of the West Bank to the Israeli territory. This is unacceptable according to international norms and laws, and unacceptable to all of us.
We also discussed the latest developments of the Palestinian reconciliation, and regional and international efforts to achieve it, and we agreed to convince the two parties that the unity and ending the division as soon as possible constitute the first defense line of Palestinian cause.
We also discussed the latest developments in the efforts facilitated by the State of Qatar to achieve peace in Afghanistan, the talks between Taliban and the United States, and the Afghani-Afghani talks in order to put an end to this conflict from which this Islamic country has suffered for long decades.
We also discussed the latest developments in Syria, especially regarding the situation in Idlib.
Thank you, Your Excellency, for your warm welcome and hospitality, and I always look forward to meeting you and seeing you in Doha
Question: Omar Khashram; Al-Jazeera: The United States of America issued a decision putting Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps on the list of terrorist organizations. How do you evaluate this decision and how it affects the region?
The Turkish Foreign Minister: Yes, America has issued this decision, which is unilateral, as part of a series of sanctions, it imposes on the Republic of Iran. We always say and repeat, in all international forums and platforms, that it was a decision issued by America and cannot be internationalized, and that this decision is inapprehensible for us. We have participated in many conferences together with the sisterly State of Qatar and I think one of the Gulf countries had proposed the categorization of the Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization.
For example, the “PKK” is categorized as a terrorist organization by the United States, but regardless of that, the US military and armed forces cooperate with it in Syria. We, in the Republic of Turkey, have always sought to raise these issues with America and Iran in several fora. No country can declare that the army and armed forces of another country are terrorist organizations, and we do not support the issuance of unilateral decisions. We, in the Republic of Turkey, always show our concerns and clarify our view to the United States of America.
HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister: Differences between countries must be resolved through dialogue. Iran is a country with a regional and geographic position that requires us, as neighboring countries, to look at with different considerations, whether we agree or disagree with its policies. Our political dispute with Iran must be resolved through negotiations. If we disagree with some behaviors of the Iranian army, or of any other army, the solution will not be through imposing sanctions. In general, the State of Qatar has always considered that unilateral actions, whether done by America or others, do not address any problems or resolve any differences. Today, the State of Qatar is subjected to unilateral actions taken by three Gulf States. The whole world believes today that the State of Qatar is still following its approach, going forward on the course of development, while the countries that are taking unilateral actions against it have no supporters in the international community.
Q: Mohammed Iqbal of the Anatolia Agency: My question to both ministers, as you know there is an intervention by Hafter and his force; he attacked Tripoli the capital, how do you assess the developments in Libya?
HE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs: If we look at the different international reactions to the last attack by Hafter forces against Tripoli, we would see that the states whom we agree with and who are committed to preserving the international order and international law demand a quick cessation of military operations to get back to the main points, to dialogue and communication so as to reach a political settlement. On the other hand, we find there are other states who support such movement by action and at the same time condemn it by statements. We do not understand this duplicity used by such states, which is surprising and may just be a hypocritical response in front of the international community, making believe that their positions are consistent with the international law. On the other hand, there are some states who did not declare any position except until they saw the international resistance against such illegal action. We, as an international community recognized the government of the national accord as the legitimate government and the official representative of the Libyan state in the international community. This legitimate government must not be treated as equal with the parties who defy the international resolutions, be it Hafter forces or any other militias who repel against the legitimate government.
HE the Turkish Foreign Minister: From the outset, as I noted in the beginning of my speech about the Syrian crisis and the capital Tripoli, there is, as you know, a government recognized by the world and the United Nations. This is why we agree with the international opinion, and see that these movements are illegal and illegitimate, that they must be stopped as quickly as possible, and that any similar movement will aggravate the situation in Libya. I think those who support Hafter and these military movements are involved in what is happening in Libya. As you now know the crisis in Yemen is still raging and Yemen is still suffering from health problems, famine, and other calamities. The states which are committing these irresponsible actions are responsible for all the current situation in Yemen. We have discussed this issue with the Qatari Foreign Minister and exchanged our views with various countries, like Britain, France, Germany and many others. We will also communicate with the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Through such approach, we hope all countries of the world would be honest enough to announce their positions and show their condemnation. Giving lip service or verbal support is not enough, and all must be honest in providing full support to redress what is happening in Libya and prevent the recurrence of the ordeal of Iraq.