Prof. Dr. Mustafa Şentop, Speaker of the GNAT indicated that with Turkey’s recent successful operations, terrorist organizations have become dysfunctional domestically, “Terrorist organizations were trying to deploy in Turkey’s Iraqi and Syrian borders by taking advantage of the lack of governance. Turkey confronted this through its cross-border operations.” 26.03.2021

Speaker Mustafa Şentop, host of theFourth Conference of Speakers of Parliaments on Countering Terrorism and Strengthening Regional Connectivity” held on March 25th in Antalya, conveyed his assessments on Turkey’s fight against terrrorism to Anatolian Agency (AA) journalist.

Speaker Şentop emphasized that operations carried out both domestically and abroad have been successful, “With recent operations, Turkey has made terrorist organizations dysfunctional within its borders and eradicated human resource support from within the country. Apart from this, terrorist organizations were trying to deploy in Turkey’s Iraqi and Syrian borders by taking advantage of the lack of governance. Turkey confronted this through its cross-border operations. Especially with the corridors built in Syria, it made the creation of an artificial terrorist state there impossible”

Speaker Şentop pointed out that terrorist organizations have been made unable to shelter, through the help of operations held in Iraq and that they have executed successful operations towards eliminating terrorist organizations from their current locations.

Mustafa Şentop indicated that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Parliament also have significant work on diplomacy. Şentop stated that meetings and discussions are held on parliamentary level, “The most important dimension of terrorism is the existence of various states who at least support them morally. I believe that international terrorist organizations keep their existence through the encouragement of various great states. This connection must be cut. While trying to convince our counterparts to do so, we are acting with an attitude towards revealing and deciphering those.”

Şentop told that the GNAT has been conducting studies in coordination with the Presidency and Ministry of Foreign Affairs in order to enhance relations between countries.

Şentop stated that parliamentary diplomacy has a stimulating aspect in terms of providing an environment for easier communication, relations and negotiations, “We provide an opportunity to address discussions and negotiations more deeply in a more unconstrained environment. Therefore, we constitute a dimension that contributes, supports and strengthens diplomacy conducted by our state and government.”

Şentop told that they have successfully held the fourth conference with the participation of seven countries. Şentop reminded that the first meeting was held in 2017 in Islamabad, the second in Tehran, the third in Istanbul and last year it was not held due to the pandemic.

Şentop mentioned that the fifth meeting would be held in Russia, “7 countries that have attended this meeting are China, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Russia and Turkey. Its theme is ‘Countering Terrorism and Strengthening Regional Connectivity’. We have reached a broad consensus as seen in the declaration.”

Şentop told that they have made discussions on conducting studies about the fight with terrorist organizations in general and human and financial resources of terrorist organizations and emphasized that there were debates on considering especially drug trafficking within this context.

Şentop emphasized that they wish to institutionalize a ground by way of the Conference of Speakers, “On the other hand, we wish to increase the number of participating countries. This year, we have invited Iraq. We have recommended Qatar, it is generally accepted. There are countries recommended by Russia. Some of those are Central Asian Turkish Republics. We will have meetings with them. This is an important meeting that involves a broad geography, more than one third of the world’s population.”

Şentop mentioned that a part of all meetings were reserved for issues related to the pandemic and told that there has been disputes among some countries because of medical equipment supplies whereas some countries confiscated other countries’ medical equipments. Şentop told that there are discussions on the production of vaccines:

“There are issues in relation to supplying vaccines to all the countries around the world. On the other hand, there are discussions about accepting all the vaccines at the same standard and not making politics through vaccines. Those issues were discussed in our meeting.”