ANKARA 

Somalia’s justice minister, who is also a graduate of a Turkish university, paid his first official visit abroad to his “second home,” Turkey.

Having lived in Turkey for eight years and receiving an education there, he decided it would be the destination of his first official foreign visit after being appointed as the Horn of Africa nation’s justice minister, Abdulkadir Mohamed Nur told Anadolu Agency in an exclusive interview.

“I have many friends and people that I love here in Turkey. Visiting Turkey means so much to me,” Nur said.

Nur holds a bachelor’s degree in international relations from Ankara University in Turkey’s capital, and has also worked as a diplomat at the Somali embassy in Turkey.

Besides knowing Somali and English, he is fluent in Turkish as well.

Speaking on his first decision to come to Turkey years ago, he said: “First of all, I was curious about the education and university.”

“We had taken courses on the history of Turkey because we are a Muslim country,” he said, adding: “With that curiosity, I decided to come to Turkey.”

He went on to say: “I came here in 2009. When I arrived, I decided to both study and work because I was curious about the education. That’s why I immediately enrolled in a Turkish course.”

After starting to receive Turkish classes, he enrolled in his university with a scholarship from Turkey’s Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB).

Turkey gave me a unique experience with life and education, he recounted, underlining that living in the country was a “completely different transition and journey” for him.

Brotherly ties

Commenting on the relationship between Turkey and Somalia, Nur said: “As you know, Turkey and Somalia have brotherly ties. And this relationship starts in the 1600s in the Ottoman period. They always helped Somalia.”

On this matter, the sides started to revitalize relations in 2011 with a visit by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, he said.

“The president became Somalia’s hope when he arrived in Somalia as it was going through difficult times and was closed in the world,” he underlined.

“After that, our relationships strengthened further.”

On his meeting with Erdogan during the visit to Turkey, Nur said: “It was a really important and proud meeting for me.”

“The Turkish people and state are the hope of the Muslim world and always see it as a priority and have made sacrifices. They shared their wealth and everything with the world,” he underlined.

“So, I want to thank Turkish people. The president is also leading the Turkish people in this regard. I’d like to thank him as well,” he said.

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