PM Khan reaffirms Pakistan’s support for Turkey against FETO threat

Prime Minister Imran Khan, on behalf of the government and people of Pakistan, has expressed solidarity with Turkey on its ‘Democracy and National Unity Day’ being observed on Wednesday, to honour the martyrs of 2016.

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In his message addressed to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in this regard, the premier said that Islamabad continues to stand by Istanbul and supports its efforts to address the threat posed by Fethullah Gulen Terrorist Organisation (FETO).

“Pakistan continues to stand by Turkey and has been taking all possible steps to support Turkey’s efforts to address the threat posed by the Fethullah Gulen Terrorist Organisation (FETO). We will always be shoulder-to-shoulder supporting each other,” read the tweet by prime minister’s office.

PM Imran said that four years ago on this day, the Turkish people displayed their characteristic resilience and legendary bravery to defy the forces of darkness targeting Turkey’s peace and stability as well as its democratic institutions.

Imran Khan recalled that the entire Pakistani nation spoke with one voice against the attempt to undermine Turkey’s peace, democracy, and march towards prosperity.

National day of democracy and unity

The Turkish authorities have declared July 15 an annual national holiday of “democracy and unity”, billing the foiling of the putsch as a historic victory of Turkish democracy.

On July 15, 2016, two hundred and forty-nine people, not including the plotters, were killed when a disgruntled faction in the army sent tanks into the streets and warplanes into the sky in a bid to overthrow Erdogan after one-and-a-half decades in power.

But they were thwarted within hours as the authorities regrouped and people poured into the streets in support of Erdogan, who blamed followers of his ally turned nemesis, the US-based preacher Fethullah Gulen.

The authorities embarked on the biggest purge in Turkey’s history, arresting 50,000 people and sacking over 100,000 more. Erdogan also shored up his position by winning a referendum on enhancing his powers earlier in 2017.

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