REMARKS BY SELÇUK ÜNAL, AMBASSADOR OF THE REPUBLIC OF TURKEY ON THE OCCASION OF UNITED MUSLIM ORGANISATIONS EID-DINNER

Selçuk ÜNAL 15.09.2018

REMARKS BY SELÇUK ÜNAL, AMBASSADOR OF THE REPUBLIC OF TURKEY ON THE OCCASION OF UNITED MUSLIM ORGANISATIONS EID-DINNER

(15 September 2018, Ottawa)

Distinguished Members of Parliament,

His Worship Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa,

Dear Friends,

Thank you for your invitation to tonight’s United Muslim Organisations Eid Dinner. I wish you all a very happy Eid and prosperous month of Muharram. I salute all Muslim leaders in the Ottawa-Gatineau area and representatives from all major mosques.

On this occasion, as the current Chair of the Summit of the Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC), I would like to convey two messages from Turkey and talk about our humanitarian diplomacy.

Turkey has traditionally been a land that offered safe haven to many people from different religions, races and languages throughout history. Turkey always opened its arms and hearts to those who were forced to leave their homelands due to violence.

The attitude of the Turkish society to migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers has always been based on tolerance, sympathy, hospitality and solidarity without any discrimination regarding religion, language, race or ethnicity. Afghans, Bosnians, Kosovars, Macedonians and lately Syrians and Iraqis took refuge in our territories



. They belong to many different ethnic and religious backgrounds; yet one thing they all shared was the trust they had for the Turkish people. Turkey will continue its extensive humanitarian assistance to Somalia and Bangladesh to help our friends over there in particular to the Rohingya people in and from Myanmar.

As of today, Turkey is hosting more than 3.5 million refugees from Syria and Iraq. Turkey has spent more than 31 billion USD for those escaping from a certain death since 2011. So far more than 40.000 Syrians have arrived to Canada and almost 5.000 of them came from Turkey. I not only thank the Canadian authorities, but also His Worship Mayor Watson for hosting some of them herein Ottawa. Our humanitarian assistance as well as our cooperation with Canada will not stop. Needless to say, our active humanitarian diplomacy will continue under the new Presidential system.

While continuing its humanitarian diplomacy, our fight against DAESH and other terror organisations to help our Syrians and Iraqi friends will not cease.

Secondly, I once again would like to thank all Muslim communites herein Otttawa-Gatineau area for their valuable support to Turkey when a group we defined as a terrorist organisation namely FETÖ attempted to topple the legitimate government and Parliament via a failed coup attempt.

Thank you.

Monday - Friday

09:00 - 17:00

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