Çavuşoğlu: We cooperate with Visegrad to combat irregular migration

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Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu clarified on Tuesday that his country is working closely with the countries of the Visegrad Group to combat irregular migration.

This came in a speech during a conference of the foreign ministers of Turkey and the countries of the “Vishgrad group” consisting of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia in the Hungarian capital Budapest.

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“We will host the Hungarian police in Turkey in order to cooperate in combating irregular migration in this region and international organized crime networks, and the Turkish police will be in the region as well,” Çavuşoğlu said.

He noted that the Group and Turkey meetings have been held since 2013, and that this “4 + Turkey” formula has become a very important dialogue platform.

Noting that they discussed in today’s meeting the latest developments in Afghanistan and the Balkans and what can be done in combating irregular migration.

Çavuşoğlu stated that during today’s working banquet, they will discuss how to develop economic cooperation, especially after the coronavirus epidemic.

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And how to develop relations between Turkey and the European Union, and between the Visegrad Group and Turkey.

He stressed that the situation of the millions who left their areas in Afghanistan and Syria is a source of concern for everyone, adding:

“Working together on migration, equitable burden-sharing and the voluntary and safe return (of refugees) is important.”

And he added, “We are facing the threat of a new exodus, especially because of the recent situation in Afghanistan.

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In order to alleviate the humanitarian crisis there, we as an international community must help and support Afghanistan and its neighboring countries and the Afghan people in those countries within the framework of the urgent relief calls of the United Nations.”

Çavuşoğlu expressed Turkey’s support for its allies, led by Poland, in the migration crisis on its border with Belarus.

He stressed the need to focus on how to solve the immigration problem from its source, including Afghanistan, noting that he explained to his counterparts during today’s meeting the importance of gradual communication with the current “Taliban” administration and the impact of Turkey.

He pointed out that he discussed with his counterparts the situation in the Balkans, stressing the importance of stability and prosperity in the Western Balkans for Europe and Turkey.

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“Therefore, we have to cooperate in order to overcome the crisis in the Balkans, and for all parties to continue the dialogue, and Turkey plays an important role in this regard, especially as it is a country that can communicate with Serbia and Kosovo,” he said.

In response to a question about the possibility of taking steps of cooperation with the “Visegrad” group on immigration, he stressed that Turkey is working in close cooperation with its allies in the fight against irregular migration.

He also pointed out that Turkey is cooperating with Serbia in this regard, adding: “Our police are there, and we may open a consulate branch where our police work there so that we can support these activities.”

Çavuşoğlu described Turkey’s relations with Poland as “great”, indicating that the two sides are working to strengthen political relations in several fields, including the defense industries.

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And he added, “We deliver natural gas to the countries of the region through the Turkish Stream 1 and Turkish Stream 2 projects.

And to European countries from Azerbaijan via the TANAP gas pipeline and other projects.