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Iran’s Rouhani hails return of stability to Turkey

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Supporters of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan shout slogans on the back of a truck during a pro-government demonstration on Taksim square in Istanbul, Turkey, on July 16, 2016. © Reuters

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani hails the return of stability and security to Turkey after a coup attempt against the Turkish government failed.

According to Rouhani’s Twitter account, the Iranian president held a telephone conversation with his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on Monday, voicing satisfaction over the restoration of calm to Turkey after an abortive military coup in the country.

In his telephone conversation, Rouhani pointed to the role of the Turkish people in defending democracy and their elected government, saying, "Fortunately, the Turkish people showed their great political maturity throughout this coup and proved that bullying approaches have no place in our region." 

He added that Iran has been closely following the developments in Turkey, adding that Erdogan’s call on the nation to take to the streets in the early hours of the coup was “reassuring.”

The Iranian president highlighted the importance of Turkey for the Islamic Republic and said, “Turkey’s peace and stability will strengthen peace and stability across the region and we do not doubt that certain major powers as well as terrorists do not want to see stability in Muslim countries.”

“Just as we struggle for our own country’s stability and security, we are duty-bound to feel responsible for the stability and security of neighbors and friendly Muslim countries as well,” Rouhani pointed out.

He said the recent events in Turkey were “a test” to recognize the country’s domestic and foreign friends and foes.

Calling for a collective campaign in the region against terrorism, the Iranian president urged all regional countries to fight terrorists and eliminate them in order to promote stability and peace across the region.

The Turkish president, for his part, appreciated Rouhani's phone call and said bullets and tanks may kill people but cannot destroy a nation’s ideals.

Turkish policemen carry the coffin of a fellow police officer in Istanbul on July 18, 2016, following failure of a coup attempt against the country’s government. ©AFP 

Erdogan added that the conditions in Turkey have returned to normal, but “we cannot assume that everything has ended.”

The Turkish president emphasized that his country is ever more determined to continue down its path, saying, “We are resolved to cooperate with Iran and Russia for the settlement of regional issues and increase our efforts to restore peace and stability to the region.”

The botched putsch began late on July 15, when a faction of the Turkish military blocked Istanbul’s iconic Bosphorus Bridge and strafed the headquarters of the Turkish intelligence agency and parliament in the capital.

Tanks, helicopters and soldiers clashed with police and people on the streets of the two main cities.

The Turkish president rushed back to Istanbul from a Mediterranean holiday and called on people to defy the coup plotters’ orders of a curfew and stage a rally in support of his government.

Prime Minister Binali Yildirim on Monday updated the media on the number of people arrested or killed over the coup attempt, saying that more than 7,500 have been detained since the coup was declared over two days ago.

He also gave a new toll of the victims of the military-led coup attempt, saying 208 people were killed, including 145 civilians, 60 police and three soldiers, adding that 1,491 others were also wounded.

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