Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy chairman Faruk Loğoğlu said on Tuesday that his party wants to see Turkey and Iran engage in constructive, credible dialogue in order to restore trust, reduce tension and avoid becoming the tools of countries outside the region.
In a written statement, Loğoğlu said Turkey and Iran should use cautious language with each other following recent harsh remarks by several Iranian officials about the deployment of Patriot missiles to the Turkish-Syrian border.
Sour relations between the two regional powers have become more visible over the past year due to a number of issues, including opposing stances on the 21-month Syrian crisis, the installation of a NATO early warning radar station in Malatya in November of 2011 and, most recently, the deployment of Patriot missiles to the Turkish-Syrian border. Turkey has since been chastised on a number of occasions by top-level Iranian military and political officials who say Turkey is playing with fire and increasing its chances of attack by making misguided foreign policy decisions.
Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi recently called NATO’s deployment of Patriot missiles on Turkey’s request a provocation for large-scale war. Iranian Chief of Staff Maj. Gen. Seyed Hassan Firouzabadi also made critical remarks about the deployment of the Patriot missiles.
Loğoğlu said that the remarks by Salehi and Firouzabadi are worrisome with regards to the relations between the countries and the peace of the region.
He said the language used by Iranian officials lacks the traditional essence of Turkish-Iranian relations and is humiliating.
Calling on the Iranian administration to be more sensitive in its discourse on Turkey, Loğoğlu said: “At a time when these two big countries in the region need healthy relations most, it is very wrong for them to escalate tension with conflicting public statements.”
The CHP deputy chairman also said that Turkey should show that it takes Iran’s views and criticisms about the deployment of the Patriot missiles seriously and, as the first step towards this, the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government should share the facts about the Patriot missiles.
By Todays Zaman
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