ANKARA: In a joint press conference following their meeting, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Turkish premier Ahmet Davutoglu emphasised the need for a peaceful solution to the Yemen conflict, and voiced their concerns over the ousting of the legitimate government in Yemen by non-state actors.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif termed the situation in Yemen as “grave,” and cautioned that the crisis might endanger the unity of the Muslim Ummah, in addition to having serious implications for the whole region.
Sharif said both sides were of the view that “the current crisis in Yemen could plunge the region into turmoil", and said that all possible collective measures should be taken to address the crisis.
The Pakistani prime minister said both Turkey and Pakistan maintain close brotherly relations with other Islamic countries in the region and attach great importance to their security and territorial integrity. He said that Pakistan will engage with Saudi Arabia and other Muslim countries in the region.
Davutoglu said Pakistan and Turkey stand with Saudi Arabia in its time of need, and both countries would defend the territorial integrity of Saudi Arabia if need be.
He said the situation in the Middle East affected both Turkey and Pakistan, and both countries have a common stance on the situation in the region. He added that both Pakistan and Turkey are in contact with Saudi Arabia and Iran regarding the Yemen conflict.
The Turkish prime minister stressed the importance of bilateral consultation on issues facing the Muslim world, and said both Turkey and Pakistan support efforts for reconstruction in Yemen.
Ahmet Davutoglu also said that Pakistan's pain was Turkey's pain, and that the Pakistani nation held the same views about Turkey.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif arrived earlier in Ankara for an official one-day visit, during which he is to hold talks with the Turkish prime minister, address a press conference, and meet Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to discuss the ongoing Saudi-Yemen crisis.
Nawaz was accompanied by Adviser to the Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Syed Tariq Fatemi and Secretary Foreign Affairs Aizaz Chaudhry.
Diplomatic sources claim Iranian Foreign Affairs Minister Muhammad Javad Zarif is expected in Islamabad on April 8 to discuss the situation in Yemen.