FM Davutoğlu praises Turkey’s African opening

FM Davutoğlu praises Turkey’s African opening

FM Davutoğlu praises Turkey’s African opening

DHA Photo

Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has praised the African opening of Turkey, saying that it was a “serious success story” while reiterating Ankara’s Somalia policy was a “legend.”

Speaking at the African Strategies Sectoral Review meeting yesterday, Davutoğlu said the African opening strategy of Turkey had changed Ankara’s image not only in Africa, but also in the world.

Turkey engages with Africa not only to develop its national strategy and to throw its economic and political weight, but also to share the sorrow of African people, the minister said in Ankara. Ankara has donated $750 million for Africa, he added.

Some people deemed Turkey’s capacity to be insufficient in the early stages of Ankara’s African opening, Davutoğlu noted. However, Turkish embassies in the continent, whose number was 12 in 2005, had now reached 34, he said.

The top diplomat stressed the Turkish International Cooperation and Development Agency’s (TİKA) role in Africa, especially in Somalia, operating with nine coordination offices, which is a sign that Turkey engages the continent with a humanitarian dimension.

Turkey launched a major diplomatic, economic and humanitarian push in war-torn Somalia, becoming one of very few nations to set up an embassy in the capital after members of al-Shabaab were driven out of the city in 2011. Since then, Turkey has been flooding Mogadishu with hundreds of development and aid workers, as well as opening schools, improving sanitation and repairing roads and the city’s airport.

A car loaded with explosives rammed into the gates of an office housing Turkish embassy staff in the Somali capital on July 27, killing one police officer and wounding four others.