Congratulating Azerbaijan on liberating its occupied territories, Turkey's foreign minister on Tuesday termed the Karabakh deal a “great victory” for Baku.
“We will continue to stand with Azerbaijan. This [deal] is a great success and victory for Azerbaijan. Lands, under occupation for 30 years are being liberated,” Mevlut Cavusoglu said at a joint news conference with his Kyrgyz counterpart Ruslan Kazakbaev in the capital Ankara.
He said Turkey is in contact with all parties on monitoring the deal to end the Nagorno-Karabakh dispute.
“Finally, [Armenian premier Nikol] Pashinyan and the Armenian army had to give up,” Cavusoglu said, adding that Armenia has paid a heavy price for its unrelenting pursuit of war and conflict.
Earlier in the day, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that Azerbaijan and Armenia have signed an agreement to create the necessary conditions for a long-term and comprehensive solution to the longstanding conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, also known as Upper Karabakh.
The announcement sparked celebrations in many Azerbaijani cities, with thousands carrying both Azerbaijani and Turkish flags, singing national anthems and dancing in the streets.
“We are pleased with the support that the Turkic Council has extended to Azerbaijan,” Cavusoglu said, stressing the need for all brotherly countries to show their solidarity.
Relations between the two former Soviet republics over Upper Karabakh have remained tense since 1991, with fresh clashes erupting on Sept. 27.
Armenia repeatedly attacked Azerbaijani civilians and forces for over 40 days, even violating three humanitarian cease-fire agreements.
‘FETO is a threat to all’
On a question regarding the recent action against a Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO)-linked charter school in the US, the Turkish foreign minister said American authorities are finally starting to realize the threat posed by the terror group.
The US slapped a $4.5 million fine on a FETO school for engaging in non-competitive bidding practices, the US Justice Department said last Friday.
Cavusoglu said the Americans are beginning to understand the dark ambitions of FETO and how it uses people and technology for its illicit aims.
“FETO is a threat to all countries, not just Turkey. We have warned all countries; FETO is a terrorist organization, a criminal network, [and] everyone should fight it,” he asserted.
He said FETO members were also at the forefront of the post-election violence in Kyrgyzstan.
“What FETO members love the most is to create chaos, execute coups, and spark riots wherever they go. The steps that need to be taken are essential for peace and stability in Kyrgyzstan,” he added.
FETO and its US-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016 in Turkey, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
Turkey accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.
‘Ties growing stronger’
Turkey and Kyrgyzstan’s relations have been progressing well, particularly in the economic domain, Cavusoglu said.
“Our economic ties have grown stronger. Last year, our trade volume exceeded $500 million with a 22% increase,” he said, adding that the aim is to hit the $1 billion mark.
The minister said Turkey attaches great importance to Kyrgyzstan’s economic development and will continue to invest in the brotherly country.
He recalled that Turkey has provided financial and credit support to Kyrgyzstan in the past, and also provided medical aid to help in its fight against COVID-19.
‘Partners and brothers'
The Kyrgyz foreign minister started his speech by conveying his respect on the death anniversary of Turkey’s founding father Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.
Turkey and Kyrgyzstan are brothers, not just strategic partners, Ruslan Kazakbaev said, recalling that Turkey was the first country to recognize Kyrgyzstan and open its embassy.
“Turkey continues to provide economic and humanitarian aid to Kyrgyzstan. We thank you very much for that; I thank the Turkish people, especially President Recep Tayyip Erdogan,” Ruslan Kazakbaev said.
He said the two sides discussed bilateral and multilateral issues in detail, stressing that Kyrgyzstan will continue to act in coordination with Turkey in all areas of foreign policy.
“We are brotherly countries with one language, one religion, one culture,” Kazakbaev said, adding that there are no problems between the two countries.
He added that both sides are committed to raise the volume of bilateral trade to $1 billion.
Kazakbaev concluded his remarks by inviting Cavusoglu to Kyrgyzstan on an official visit.