By Muhammet Emin Avundukluoglu
Turkey's parliament speaker on Monday urged NATO to back Turkey's fight against terrorist groups.
"I am pleased to celebrate the 67th anniversary of Turkey's NATO membership," said Binali Yildirim in a statement.
Telling how Turkey joined NATO's ranks on Feb. 18, 1952, Yildirim said: "Turkey plays an important role in providing defense needs as an important member of the alliance."
Yildirim added that Turkey "resolutely continues its fight against terrorism."
"In this regard, we expect our allies to support Turkey's operations that the country has been diligently conducting against the PKK/PYD/YPG and Daesh terrorist organizations," he said.
Turkey has been a member of NATO for 67 years and boasts the second-largest army of the alliance, after the U.S.
In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU -- has been responsible for the death of some 40,000 people. The YPG/PYD is its Syrian branch.
More than 300 people have lost their lives in Daesh-claimed attacks in Turkey, targeting civilians in