Wednesday, June 16, 2004
-----------------------Zebari: Erdogan is The Man
Instead of chuckling at Erdogan's statement of late-- "countries need to reform themselves, or else outside pressure will force them."-- Zebari has endorsed it:
At the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) meeting in Istanbul, Iraqi Foreign Minister, Hoshyar Zebari, said yesterday that with its democratic and secular identity, Turkey is a good model for regional countries, primarily for Iraq.
Zebari told Zaman: "Turkey is a democratic country. There is a new development everyday on the issue of improving freedom. Turkey, as a Muslim country, has been a good model for the region with its democratic and secular identity." Regarding Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's attendance at the G-8 summit, Zebari said: "This pleased us. I particularly like Erdogan's speech. I believe that the region needs reforms. Like you, we also want that to happen by the countries' own will..."
When Zebari was asked to comment on the fact that the outlawed terrorist organization, the Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) has resumed its activities, Zebari said: "Now I represent Iraq. This has no south and north. All of the terrorist notions will be excluded from Iraq. We will no longer make Iraqi lands a base for attacks on its neighbors."
Still the irony does seem to be lost Erdogan, unless he knows that he is presenting Turkey as a country that has recently reformed due to outside pressure, viz a viz the EU.