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Royal Hashemite Court (Jordan)

King, Turkish president discuss bilateral ties, region
Ankara, 5 March 2013

His Majesty King Abdullah and Turkish President Abdullah Gul on Tuesday held talks on ways to cement bilateral relations and current developments in the region, particularly Syria and efforts to achieve peace in accordance with the two-state solution.

King Abdullah and President Gul called for further efforts to enhance cooperation in the economy, tourism, energy, transportation, and infrastructure projects.

His Majesty said Jordanian-Turkish relations are a model of strong ties in the Middle East, as they have been evolving and growing to serve the common interests of the two peoples.

His Majesty emphasised opportunities to develop bilateral trade, which reached about $900 million. He added that the Turkish economic model is appreciated globally for its tangible and strong results.

President Gul hailed Jordan's reform drive and the King's keenness to ensure broader engagement in decision-making. The Turkish President paid tribute to His Majesty's discussion papers, which he said are a true indication of the reformist vision of the King.

"It is important that political reform goes hand-in-hand with maintaining stability and security, and this is what has characterised the Jordanian model", Guld said, praising the fairness and transparency of the Jordanian parliamentary elections.

President Gul thanked His Majesty for hosting a delegation of Turkish journalists prior to the visit, on an information programme that included field visits and meetings with top officials.

The Ankara talks also dealt with coordination and consultation mechanisms on various regional and international issues, first and foremost the crisis in Syria and efforts to achieve peace in the Middle East according to the two-state solution.

In remarks to reporters after the talks, the King thanked President Gul for the warm reception and hospitality.

His Majesty said: “My discussion with the Turkish President covered several issues, and was very fruitful, as my visit to Turkey comes at an important time for the Middle East.”

“Jordan and Turkey face common challenges, as a result of tensions and conflicts in the region, but with these challenges come opportunities, and one of the main objectives of my visit to Turkey is to develop bilateral relations and take advantage of features that bring us together, especially our free trade agreement, as well as fruitful cooperation, which we work to strengthen in strategic areas, most importantly trade, information technology, tourism, industry, energy, and water.”

On regional issues, His Majesty stressed that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is at the heart of instability in the region, “and the international community must redouble its efforts to quickly re-launch negotiations between the Palestinians and Israelis on the basis of two-state solution, which is the only way to reach a just, comprehensive and lasting peace.” He expressed deep concern over threats against Jerusalem and its holy places, stressing that Jordan will continue its efforts to protect the identity of the holy city and its Islamic and Christian holy sites.

The King said he discussed with President Gul the Syrian crisis, calling for a comprehensive political solution that puts an end to the bloodshed, restores security and stability in Syria, and preserves the unity of its people and territory.

His Majesty pointed out that this solution must be inclusive and lead to the cessation of all manifestations of sectarian conflict, and spare Syria any division, warning of the dire consequences of this on the Syrian people and the region as a whole.

In his remarks, President Gul underlined Jordanian-Turkish ties and stressed keenness to develop them in various fields. He added that a delegation of Jordanian businessmen will meet, on the sidelines of the King's visit, with their Turkish counterparts to explore opportunities to boost cooperation between the private sectors in the two countries.

President Gul said Turkey and Jordan are bearing the repercussions of the massive outflow of Syrian refugees, whose number Turkey is more than 180,000, while the number in Jordan is much larger.