Turkey's Babacan says Balkans need common values, ideals

FM Babacan highlighted importance of dialogue to find productive solutions to problems.

Turkey's Babacan says Balkans need common values, ideals

Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babacan has said that NATO and the European Union (EU) could succeed in creating common values and ideals in the Balkan countries where different religious faiths and cultures co-existed.

Speaking at a panel discussion on "Caucasus and Balkans" held on the sidelines of the 45th Munich Security Conference in Germany, Babacan said, "the Balkans where different religious faiths and cultures co-existed, need common values and ideals to bring people together. NATO and the EU could achieve it together."

Babacan highlighted importance of dialogue to find productive solutions to problems. "The EU should pursue an opening policy towards the Balkans. We support Serbia's membership to the EU. On the other hand, we think that Macedonia should become a member of NATO as soon as possible," he said.

Referring to Turkey-Armenia relations, Babacan said, "our efforts have been continuing to normalize the relations between the two countries after President Serzh Sargsian invited President Abdullah Gul to watch the soccer match between Turkish and Armenian national teams in Yerevan. After the relations between Turkey and Armenia and Armenia and Azerbaijan are fully normalized, the situation in the region will change considerably."

Upon a question about the Cyprus issue, Babacan said that Turkey fully supported President Mehmet Ali Talat of the Turkish republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and the latest negotiation process between the two parties on the island aiming at finding a lasting and comprehensive solution to the Cyprus issue.

Meanwhile, President Sargsian of Armenia said that important developments could happen in Turkey-Armenia relations in the second half of the year.

He said that Armenia aimed at developing its cooperation ties with all regional countries to make southern Caucasus an alternate route of transportation.


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Last Mod: 08 Şubat 2009, 12:51
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