Türkiye contributed to establishing global peace, tranquility, security in 2022: President Erdogan
Extending New Year greetings, Recep Tayyip Erdogan wishes 'a year full of peace, welfare’
By Faruk Zorlu
With its roles in the Black Sea grain initiative and the mediation in the Russia-Ukraine war, Türkiye contributed to establishing global peace, tranquility, and security in 2022, Türkiye's president said on Saturday.
In his New Year’s message, Recep Tayyip Erdogan emphasized that Ankara made a very important contribution to the solution of the global food crisis by implementing the Istanbul grain export deal and securing its extension, which allows exports of food from key Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea.
"We contributed to the establishment of global peace, tranquility, and security. We acted as a mediator in resolving conflicts, including the Ukraine crisis," Erdogan said.
Extending New Year greetings, Erdogan wishes "every member of our nation as well as the whole humanity a year full of peace and welfare in 2023."
Besides, addressing challenges that Türkiye overcame as the year comes to an end, Erdogan underlined the country's hard work to establish a peaceful and secure environment in the region and also on a global scale.
"No one can deny the fact that Türkiye has gained the respect of all, including its perennial adversaries, with its sensible and calm stance favoring peace and restraint in international crises," he said.
Ankara has successfully held the term presidency of the Organization of Turkic States and MIKTA, a grouping of Mexico, Indonesia, South Korea, Türkiye, and Australia.
"Our goal is no longer to rank in the top tier of the global political and economic league. Our goal is rather to obtain the political and economic strength that will put us among the very top of the top tier," he said.
Stating that they strengthened the representation of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), which joined the Organization of Turkish States as an observer member, Erdogan said they told the whole world about the violations carried out in the Eastern Aegean Islands, which have non-military status.
"We ensured that NATO's 2022 Strategic Concept was shaped within the framework of Türkiye's sensitivities and expectations," he added.
- The year of discoveries of oil reserves
Touching upon the country's initiatives in widening the capacity of renewable energy and discoveries of oil reserves, he said: "While the world is struggling with the energy crisis, we have distinguished ourselves with our own discoveries and our central position in international supply and trade routes."
Türkiye broke the record in solar, and wind power output with a total of 2.7 billion kWh generated from solar power plants and over 4.2 billion kWh from wind farms in 2022, he said, adding the country's total electricity installed capacity exceeded 100,000 megawatts.
Ankara also inaugurated the Silivri Underground Natural Gas Storage Facility, which is the largest in Europe, he said, adding it also started work on the fourth reactor of the Akkuyu nuclear power plant in Mersin on the Mediterranean coast.
The country explored an additional 58 billion cubic meters of natural gas in the Black Sea, he said, adding Türkiye's natural gas reserve in the Black Sea totals 710 billion cubic meters (25 trillion cubic feet).
In addition, Türkiye discovered 150 million barrels of net oil reserves in a southeastern mountain, he said, adding it is one of the top 10 onshore discoveries in 2022.
He went on to say that the country discovered $1 billion worth of oil reserves in the southern Adana province.
Meanwhile, Türkiye's fourth drill ship for hydrocarbon exploration joined the country's fleet. The vessel, with seventh-generation advanced technology, has a maximum operating depth of 3,600 meters (11,811 feet), a tower height of 104 meters (341 feet), and a crew capacity of 200, he said.
Besides, speaking about the country's trade initiatives, he said Türkiye's exports totaled $231 billion in the first 11 months of 2022, adding that the trade volume between Ankara and Africa exceeded $40 billion.
Noting the economic turmoil and troubles caused by especially the pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine war, the Turkish president said: "Türkiye’s economic model, which makes no concessions in employment and production, has been the main feature that has distinguished Türkiye in this period from the rest of the world, including developed countries."
Despite the high cost of living in the country, Türkiye has also reached "its history’s highest level in employment rates, production capacity, and exports figures," he said.
- Fight against terrorism, irregular migration
As of the beginning of this year, the Turkish armed forces "neutralized" 4,013 terrorists, he said, adding a total of 100 large- and 453 medium-scale operations were carried out in the fight against terrorism.
Additionally, Erdogan said 448 terrorists were "neutralized" in the Operation Claw-Lock, which was launched in April to target PKK terrorist hideouts in northern Iraq's Metina, Zap, and Avasin-Basyan regions, near the Turkish border.
Turkish security forces have carried out a total of 132,396 operations against the PKK terrorist organization, he said.
"We neutralized 85 senior terrorists, 46 of whom were abroad," he said, adding the number of terrorists who have laid down their arms through persuasion efforts this year reached 124.
A total of 39 families – which continue their protest in southeastern Türkiye against the abduction and forcible recruitment by the PKK terror group – were reunited with their children kidnapped by the terror group, the president said.
Since the beginning of 2022, Ankara has deported over 119,800 “illegal immigrants," he said, adding Türkiye has ensured the voluntary return of 538,000 people to the safe zones in Syria.
Also, 258,115 illegal immigrants were prevented from crossing the border and 7,899 illegal immigrants were held by the Turkish armed forces.
Besides, the country conducted operations against 447 organized crime groups, Erdogan said, adding it has arrested 26,000 people in 241,000 operations in the fight against drugs.
Turkish authorities use the term “neutralize” to imply the terrorists in question surrendered or were killed or captured. PKK/YPG terrorists hide out in northern Syria, near the Turkish border, where they plan or stage attacks on both locals and nearby settlements in Türkiye.
Ankara has been carrying out several anti-terror offensives in northern Iraq to root out terrorists who hide in these areas and plot cross-border attacks on Türkiye.
In its more than 35-year terror campaign against Türkiye, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Türkiye, the US, and the EU – has been responsible for the deaths of over 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants. The YPG is its Syrian branch.Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.