(MENAFN - Amman Net) The Turkish ambassador to Jordan Murat Karagöz said that 280,000 Jordanians visited Turkey last year for shopping, tourism and real estate purchases considering this a record. He hailed the -Istanbul-Aqab direct flights that began last March.
Karagoz's statements came as part of his speech on National Turkish day celebrating the 95th anniversary of the proclamation of the Republic of Turkey saying that modern Turkey founded by Mustafa Ataturk is a democratic, secular, social state governed by the rule of law and is a dynamic and growing G-20 economy.
The Turkish ambassador sad that turkey maintains its position as the biggest host country according to the UN Refugee Agency figures. Currently, Turkey hosts around 4 million asylum-seekers including more than 3,5 million Syrians who had to flee from their homelands. Turkey has spent around 33 billion US Dollars so far for the well-being of Syrians.
Turkey and Jordan have identical or similar views on the pressing regional issues. Both countries are strong partners in fight against terrorism.
The ambassador had begun his speech by expressing 'deepest sorrow' for the accident as a result of the flash flood in the Dead Sea. The ambassador quoted from the speech of the Turkish ambassador Rajab Erdogan saying 'each step we have taken towards an advance democracy and strong economy in our efforts to carry out country beyond the level of contemporary civilians as a light kindled for our glorious future. Our new airport, which we are inaugurating today in Istanbul, is one of these lights.' A short video of the new Istanbul airport was broadcast.
Below is the full text of the speech given by the Turkish ambassador. BÜYÜKELÇİ MURAT KARAGÖZ'ÜN CUMHURİYET BAYRAMI KONUŞMASI
(95.Yıldönümü, Amman 29 Ekim 2018)
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Your Royal Highnesses,
Türkiye Cumhuriye'nin değerli vatandaşları,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I have the great honor and pleasure to welcome you all, for the second time in Amman, to the Turkish National Day reception on the occasion of the 95th Anniversary of the proclamation of the Republic of Turkey.
Let me start by expressing our deepest sorrow for the tragic accident occurred as a result of flash flood in Dead Sea, last Thursday which claimed many innocent lives and left many wounded. On behalf of the people, the Embassy and the Government of the Republic of Turkey, I would like to convey my most sincere condolences and sympathy to the bereaved families, as well as to the brotherly people and Government of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
(Condolences for the Indonesian aircraft)
May Allah have mercy upon them! May their soul rest in peace!
95 years ago, today, the Turkish nation founded a new state. Modern Turkey is a product of the Republic. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk is a historical figure who led the foundation of the new state from a dismantled Empire. The world honors his memory as a leading peacemaker who upheld the principles of humanism and the vision of a united humanity. For us, the Turks, theRepublican regime and the idea of a Turkish nation state are his primary revolutions. His passion for democracy -already at that time- can be best described by his own words: 'No country is free unless it is democratic'. On this momentous occasion, we pay tribute to and respect for the profound memories of Atatürk and his comrades who materialized this important project that carried Turkey from 20th to 21th century.
Turkey, today, is a democratic, secular, social state governed by rule of law. It is a dynamic and growing G-20 economy that links east and west in a unique way. Recently, Turkey's economy faced some challenges mostly because of external manipulations. However, we were and are keen to overcome the difficult period. We stick to our 2023 Vision: namely, being one of the top 10 performing countries by then and having a higher position in global value chain. Mega projects constitute key aspects of this Vision.
As President Erdoğan says in his message on this very occasion, the text of which you can find on your tables '….each step we have taken towards an advanced democracy and a strong economy in our efforts to carry our country 'beyond the level of contemporary civilizations' as a light kindled for our glorious future. Our new airport, which we are inaugurating today in İstanbul, is one of these lights.'
Now, please stay with me for 55 seconds to watch together the promotional video about the new airport of İstanbul.
Thank you for your attention !
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The situation in Syria remains tense where Turkey plays a vital role through Astana process and beyond. After years of war in Syria, the leaders of Russia, France, Germany and Turkey met in İstanbul two days ago, to try and map out a future for this neighboring country. Among others, the İstanbul Summit reiterated calls for a UN-backed political process to end the war and lasting ceasefire in Idlib.
Humanitarian diplomacy is an indispensable moral aspect of the Turkish foreign policy. Turkey's humanitarian assistance has been diversified and significantly increased in recent years. In 2017, according to the Global Humanitarian Assistance Report Turkey ranks as the largest donor country world-wide with its 8 billion US Dollars humanitarian assistance. Turkey also ranks first when the ratio of official humanitarian assistance to national income is taken into consideration.
Turkey maintains its position as the biggest host country according to the UN Refugee Agency figures. Currently, Turkey hosts around 4 million asylum-seekers including more than 3,5 million Syrians who had to flee from their homelands. Turkey has spent around 33 billion US Dollars so far for the well-being of Syrians. Yet, we keep emphasizing the need for international solidarity and more burden-sharing.
Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
Turkey and Jordan enjoy deep rooted cultural and human ties. 2018, like the previous year confirmed this fact in all terms. Since our last gathering at this very hall a year ago, President Erdoğan and His Majesty King Abdullah II, met three times, in Turkey, the last two being in İstanbul for the Extraordinary Summits of the OIC on Jerusalem. Besides, they exchanged numerous written messages and phone conversations where they discussed bilateral and regional issues.
In addition to Turkish Foreign Minister's visit to Amman early February, Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Trade of both countries met in September, in Ankara to address the long standing issue of Free Trade Agreement with a view to finding a lasting solution to the matter based on 'win-win' formula and taking fully into account Jordan's concerns. Quadripartite Meeting was quickly followed by Turkish Trade Minister's visit to Jordan who was also welcomed by Prime Minister Razzaz.
Among the remarkable exchanges during the year, it is also worth to mention that the then Chief of General Staff of Turkey, General Akar, who is serving now as the Minister of National Defence, paid a visit to Jordan, while 'Operation Olive Branch' by the Turkish Armed Forces was going on in Afrin, Syria.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Turkey and Jordan have identical or similar views on the pressing regional issues. Both countries are strong partners in fight against terrorism. The war in Syria affected immensely Turkey and Jordan, in many aspects. While Amman and Ankara look forward to finding a political solution to the situation, they both feel heavily social and economic impact of large refugee populations. As neighbors of Iraq, Turkey and Jordan have shared interests in its stability. They both believe that a prosperous and stable Iraq will be a corner stone for regional peace and security. Like Jordan, also for Turkey the establishment of an independent, sovereign and contiguous State of Palestine based on 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital is and will remain a necessary condition of peace. Furthermore, Turkey supports the special role of the Hashemites on the holy places in Jerusalem. Both nations cooperate also within the UNRWA where Turkey acts as the Chairman of the Advisory Commission of the Agency. Last, but not least they both suffered from the impeded trade routes because of the ongoing warfare and conflicts in the region.
This rather gloomy picture does not only show clearly why Ankara and Amman need to close their ranks, but it also displays that close relations between Turkey and Jordan may serve to the benefit of the wider region.
Turkey remaines one of the most favorite destinations for the Jordanian people, be it for shopping, enjoying delicious food, sailing in the Mediterranean or buying property. 2018 can break the record of last year in which the number of Jordanian tourists visited Turkey reached 280 thousand. With the re-launched direct flights by the Turkish Airlines between İstanbul and Aqaba, last March, we hope that the mutual visits will gain further momentum.
In short, I believe that the future of the Turkish-Jordanian relations are bright, and the respective Governments are keen to deepen and broaden them to the extent possible.
Before I address my fellow citizens with a few words in Turkish, let me thank for the hardwork also accomplished throughout the year by the Embassy's Commercial Counsellor's Office, by the Office of Defence Attache, by TİKA (Turkish Development and Cooperation Agency), by Yunus Emre Turkish Cultural Center, by Maarif Foundation, by the Turkish Airlines and by the Jordanian-Turkish Friendship Association.
Specially for tonight, I thank Aselsan Middle East, a high technology and multi-product company which throughout the year supported Embassy's outreach activities, including tonight's reception, along with the Turkish Airlines, which remains to be a staunch partner of our Embassy.
I express my deep gratitute to Ms. Ayça Nur Kip, Turkish soprano, who came all the way from İstanbul to perform the Turkish and Jordanian national anthems as well as a few beautiful Turkish songs. Likewise, my thanks also go to Mr. Mohammed O. Sedeeq, Director of the National Music Conservatory, and Ms. Caroline Sweiss, member of the National Musical Conservatory Orchestra.
And finally, I wish to thank wholeheartedly my small, but efficient and talented staff in the Embassy for their dedicated hard work.
Ürdün-Türk Toplumunun Değerli Mensupları,
(Ambassador speaks Turkish and salute them)
Let me conclude by stating that 'long live the Republic of Turkey, long live Jordan, long live Turkish-Jordanian friendship'.