Gambia, Turkey relations broaden in areas of strategic cooperation

Monday, October 30, 2017

The relations between The Gambia and Turkey continues to broaden in areas of strategic cooperation in the fields of military support, economic and trade relations, health, agriculture, tourism and education, the Gambia’s foreign affairs minister said.

Minister Ousainou Darboe said The Gambia is proud of “the excellent bilateral relations” between Banjul and Ankara over the years.

He made this statement at a reception in commemoration of the 94th anniversary of the proclamation of the Republic of Turkey organised by the Turkish embassy in The Gambia on Friday at Ocean Bay Hotel in Bakau.  Turkey was founded on the 29th October 1923.

The minister said The Gambia government has pledged to provide support to The Gambia in hosting the 14th OIC summit scheduled for 2019. 

“I am happy to announce that Turkey has already set the motion rolling in this regard,” Mr Darboe said.  “Next month, protocol officers from various government ministries and institutions will be embarking on a 2-week training at the Turkish Diplomatic Academy.  This will prepare them for the task that is to come in the hosting of international conferences of a large scale.”

The minister said in recent times, the relations between The Gambia and Turkey diversity and expands beyond just governments, but also to the private sector and non-governmental organisations “which is proof of the strong ties between our two great nations”.

Turkish Ambassador to The Gambia Ismail Sefa Yuceer said Turkey has been widening its relations with other countries on political dialogue, economic interdependence and mutual interests through a proactive and dynamic foreign policy.

“Pursuing this approach, Turkey has made significant contributions to peace, stability and security in its immediate neighbourhood and globally at large,” he said.

The ambassador said relations with Africa constitute one of the prime orientations of Turkish foreign policy, which is based on reinforcing mutual gains and joint economic interests in bilateral relations.

“In this context, our approach to Africa is one of equal partnership, and is best captured in the African proverb which says: ‘if you want to go fast, go alone, but if you want to go far, go together’.  For turkey, relations with Africa remain a key priority,” Ambassador Yuceer’s said.

He also said that Turkey and The Gambia have friendly and brotherly relations, based on a long and deep-rooted past.

Following the opening of the embassies in Banjul and Ankara, the relations between the two countries keep on growing, and diversifying in all spheres on the basis of friendship and brotherhood.

“All the year round, reciprocal visits from public and private sectors of both countries, on various occasions further contributed to the already existing good relations between our two countries,” the Turkish diplomat said.