Turkey's Erdogan meets Swedish PM

Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt said Tuesday Sweden supports Turkey's EU membership.

Turkey's Erdogan meets Swedish PM

Speaking to reporters at a joint press conference with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Reinfeldt said that "Turkey has friends in the EU".

Reminding that he met with Erdogan in Stockholm in 2008, Reinfeldt said that Turkey and Sweden share strong relations.

Touching on his visit made to the Central Anatolian town of Kulu on Tuesday, Reinfeldt said that Kulu is a place where Swedish is spoken widely.

"30,000 residents of Kulu went to Sweden in the 1960s and a number of them returned back to Turkey. Kulu residents talked with me today using the Swedish language. This shows how strong are our relations with Turkey," Reinfeldt said.

"Trade and tourism between our two countries are on the rise. Sweden will assume the EU presidency as of July 1 and we are preparing for that. During our presidency, we will give attention to such topics as climate change, economy and ways to keep the EU united," Reinfeldt said.

"Turkey belongs in Europe. Turkey is a crucial country for Europe. With its regional role and young population, Turkey carries strategic importance for the EU," Reinfeldt said.

"Topics such as freedom of press, freedom of expression, religious minorities, cultural rights, and the socio-economic situation in south-eastern Anatolia may be brought up in the EU process. The establishment of a tv channel in Kurdish in Turkey was an important step," Reinfeldt said.

Referring to Cyprus, Reinfeldt said that a positive result will provide benefits (to all parties).


Güncelleme Tarihi: 22 Nisan 2009, 10:54