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President Erdogan: Gulf countries' security is Turkey's security

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Turkey’s President Erdogan says Kuwait and Turkey want stability, prosperity and peace in the region, ahead of his upcoming visit to the Gulf nation.

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey and Kuwait both want stability, prosperity and peace in the region.

Before his upcoming visit to Kuwait on Monday, Erdogan gave an exclusive interview to Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) about regional and international developments.

Erdogan stressed Ankara’s “solid ties” with all GCC states and noted that Turkey launched the High-Level Strategic Dialogue meetings with countries of the region in 2008. A total of four meetings had been held at this level and the fifth will be in Qatar later this year.

President Erdogan also applauded the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah al Ahmad al Jaber al Sabah, for being a promoter of peace in the region.

“Relations between Kuwait and Turkey are strengthened by their common culture and by sharing the same religion,” Erdogan said.

The Turkish president also called for boosting the trade volume from $569 million to $1 billion between the two countries.

– Building stability in Yemen “crucial”

President Erdogan said his visit will be a good opportunity to discuss developments in Yemen, Palestine and Syria.

“Building stability in Yemen is crucial,” Erdogan said. “We, as Turkey, support the Saudi-led coalition forces. The second phase, which is more politics-based, is very important to complete after the first phase of military operations.”

Erdogan also called for an end to Houthi attacks and said the militia should be part of the political process.

Yemen has remained in a state of turmoil since 2011 when a popular uprising forced ex-President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step down a year later.

Last month, Saudi Arabia and several other Arab states launched airstrikes against Houthi positions across Yemen.

Saudi Arabia says the strikes come in response to appeals by embattled Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi for help against the Houthis, who overran Sanaa late last year and have since advanced on other provinces.

Erdogan will pay an official visit to Kuwait from April 27-28 after being invited by Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah al Ahmad al Jaber al Sabah.

According to the Turkish Foreign Ministry, Turkish-Kuwaiti diplomatic relations started with the accreditation of the Turkish Embassy in Beirut to Kuwait in 1969.

Resource: Türkiye Newspaper, April 27, 2015

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