Turkey's Binali Yildirim lauds Pakistan's cooperation in battling Fetullah Terror Organization, group behind 2016 coup bid.
Turkey’s prime minister on Friday praised Pakistan's cooperation in the fight against the Fetullah Terror Organization (FETO) following last year's defeated coup.
Addressing a joint press conference with Pakistan's Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi in Istanbul, Binali Yildirim said Turkey welcomed Pakistan's "cooperation and sensitivity" on battling FETO, which Turkey considers a threat to Pakistan's security as well.
"With your attitude, I am sure that FETO's activities in our country will be ended," Yildirim added.
FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup attempt of July 15, 2016, which left 250 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
Ankara accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.
FETO also has a considerable international presence, including private educational institutions that serve as a revenue stream for the terrorist group.
Describing ties between two countries as "excellent," Yildirim said: "We know that Prime Minister Abbasi and his delegation consider Turkey their second home -- as we see Pakistan as our second home."
Yildirim went on to say that Turkey would continue its active contributions to establish permanent stability in Afghanistan.
"In this framework, we sincerely desire the development of cooperation between Pakistan and Afghanistan, which we consider our brother."
Yildirim also said Turkey welcomed Pakistan's sacrifices to ensure stability and peace in Afghanistan.
Also addressing reporters, Abbasi reiterated his country's commitment to the fight against terror, saying: "We stand by Turkey to fight terror and end it."
"We believe that our peoples are friends, and at the same time Turkey's friend is our friend, and Turkey's enemy is also Pakistan’s," he added.
Abbasi also urged Turkish businessmen to invest in Pakistan.
Earlier on Friday, speaking at the Turkish-African Education Ministers’ Conference in Istanbul, Yildirim said a total of 32 FETO-affiliated schools had been handed over to Turkey’s Maarif Foundation in five African countries -- Somalia, Guinea, Niger, Sudan, and the Republic of the Congo.
Yildirim also hailed the cooperation between the African countries and Turkey, saying that cooperation between them is developing in all areas, not just in politics, economics, and culture.
Turkey established the Maarif Foundation to take over the administration of overseas schools linked to FETO. It also establishes schools and education centers abroad.