By Jeyhun Aliyev

ANKARA (AA) – Turkey will always stand by the Mali people for the establishment of constitutional order after the military coup last month in the country, the top Turkish diplomat said on Wednesday.

“Mali is a friendly and brotherly country for us. We have always stood by Mali and its brotherly people in difficult days,” Mevlut Cavusoglu, who is on an official visit to Bamako, told reporters.

He said Turkey will provide the necessary contribution towards Mali’s cooperation with the international community.

Noting that he particularly wanted to visit Mali during the “difficult period” the country faces now, Cavusoglu said he also wanted to show Turkey’s solidarity with the people of Mali, adding that Mali has unfortunately faced different problems over the years.

He underlined that Mali’s stability, security, and economic stability is very important for Turkey, West Africa, and for the entire continent.

Cavusoglu said that during his visit, he met with the members and head of the National Committee for the Salvation of the People, as well as Mahamat Saleh Annadif, the UN special representative of the secretary-general for Mali, and Pierre Buyoya, the African Union high representative for Mali.

“We desire Mali to complete the transition process smoothly. It is important for the future of Mali to take the necessary steps to establish a constitutional order and hold democratic elections as soon as possible,” he said.

He went on to say that Turkey has supported the UN’s Mali mission so far, and contributed to its budget this year, adding that two Turkish police officers have also served in the West African country.

Cavusoglu stressed that Turkey will continue to support Mali’s fight against terrorism as well as its fight against the novel coronavirus outbreak, adding that his country delivered ventilators and N-95 masks to Mali.

Following his visit to Mali, the Turkish foreign minister will also pay a visit to Guinea-Bissau and Senegal on Sept. 10-11.

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