ANKARA

Some two-thirds of the nations of the world have requested medical supplies from Turkey to fight coronavirus, and nearly half of these requests were met, said Turkey’s foreign minister on Wednesday.

A total of 128 countries have requested medical supplies from Turkey in the form of grants, export permits, or purchases, said Mevlut Cavusoglu in a televised interview.

Underlining that nearly 64 countries have received medical supplies from Turkey, Cavusoglu said he recently spoke to Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca on how to meet Paraguay’s request for medical supplies.

The huge number of medical supply requests from around the world “shows that Turkey is a reliable source and a true friend,” Cavusoglu added.

On Turkish-US relations, he said the while problems continue such as Washington’s failure to extradite the US-based terrorist leader Fetullah Gulen and its support for the terrorist YPG/PKK, he said Turkish medical aid recently sent to the US did create a positive atmosphere. 

Saying he will speak to his US counterpart on Thursday about bilateral issues, Cavusoglu added: “We will continue our dialogue. Both sides must have the same sincerity.”

The Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) and Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.

Turkey also accuses FETO of a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary

‘Model country’ in fighting virus

Pointing to Turkey’s strong healthcare system, Cavusoglu said the country is sharing its experience in dealing with the pandemic with the rest of the world.

“In this respect, the World Health Organization (WHO), international community and other countries including the US are pointing to Turkey as a model country,” Cavusoglu said, adding that the medical aid it delivers will brand Turkey as a reliable source.

He further stressed that now is not the time to criticize the WHO or similar organizations as the novel coronavirus pandemic continues to impact thousands of people across the world every day.

“This isn’t the time to criticize international organizations, especially the WHO. We should make maximum use of these institutions and support them,” Cavusoglu said.

He, however, did underscore that once the pandemic ends, organizations such as the UN and WHO must be reviewed and reformed. 

“Reform is a continuing process. We need to renew the global system and reform it. International organizations should be able to adapt themselves to the latest developments. As Turkey, we have always supported multilateralism,” he added. 

Turkey has long championed reform in the UN, and particularly the Security Council, stressing that it is not large enough and unrepresentative, as “the world is larger than five.”

After originating in China last December, COVID-19 has spread to at least 187 countries and regions. Europe and the US are currently the worst-hit regions.

The pandemic has killed around 257,000 worldwide, with total infections over 3.66 million, while over 1.2 million patients have recovered, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.

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