ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
Italian PM Monti (R) shakes hands with his Turkish counterpart Erdogan in Rome. AFP photo
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
was welcomed by his Italian counterpart Mario Monti with a formal ceremony in Rome yesterday.
Following the ceremony the two officials held a bilateral meeting followed by a joint press conference.
Turkish EU Minister Egemen Bağış, Economy Minister Zafer Cağlayan, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, Environment Minister Erdoğan Bayraktar, Energy Minister Taner Yıldız, Interior Minister İdris Naim Şahin, Finance Minister Mehmet Şimşek, Justice and Development Party (AKP) Vice Chairman Ömer Çelik and AKP Group Deputy Chairman Mustafa Elitaş accompanied Erdoğan on his official visit to Rome for the “Turkey-Italy Intergovernmental Summit.”
Easing Visa requirements
In a joint statement released after the meeting, Turkey expressed gratitude to Italy for easing visa requirements for Turkish businessmen. Italy said it will work with the EU on a mutual visa policy to ease visa requirements for Turkey. The two countries signed three contracts about the fight against the terrorism, environment and social security. They also signed two statements on economic and trade relations. Erdoğan also met with Italian President Giorgio Napolitano at the Quirinalle Palace early yesterday.
The prime minister also received “the Statesmen of the Decade Award” from the International Middle East and Balkans Studies Institute (IFIMES) in a ceremony held in the town of Bled in northwestern Slovenia on May 7. A statement by IFIMES said that Erdoğan received the award due to his vision of leadership, his sound policies in the Middle East and Balkans, his economic achievements, his contribution to alliance of civilizations.
Erdoğan: UN must bolster observer mission to Syria
ROME – Agence France-Pressei
The U.N. should bolster its mission to Syria with up to 3,000 observers to give a full picture of the situation in the country, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
“We need 1,000, 2,000, maybe 3,000 observers, a major mission so they can visit the whole country and see what is happening,” Erdoğan told reporters at a joint press conference with Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti during a visit to Rome.
Erdoğan said it’s a matter of time for him to say he lost hope in Syria. He also said Turkey supports U.N. and Arab League envoy Kofi) Annan plan “We have not managed to reach the solution we want. The U.N. Security Council should maybe take different steps,” he added. Referring to elections in Syria on May 7, he said: “We don’t think these were real elections... These elections were managed.