ANKARA

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday held a phone conversation with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping to discuss steps to improve bilateral relations.

Erdogan and Xi discussed the steps that will improve bilateral relations, particularly in trade, investment, energy, transportation and health, and regional developments, according to a statement by the Turkish Communications Directorate.

Highlighting that there is a wide potential for cooperation between the two countries in all areas of the regional and global economy and diplomacy, Erdogan said the High-Level Joint Working Group will give great impetus to the cooperation between the two countries.

Erdogan said that they would like to mark the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Turkey and China in a manner worthy of the deep-rooted friendship between the two countries.

Expressing Turkey’s respect for China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, he underlined the importance for Turkey of Uyghur Turks living in prosperity, freedom, and peace as equal citizens of China.


Uyghurs make up around 45% of population in Xinjiang autonomous territory and have long accused China’s authorities of cultural, religious, and economic discrimination.

Up to 1 million people, or about 7% of the Muslim population in Xinjiang, have been incarcerated in an expanding network of “political re-education” camps, according to US officials and UN experts.

*Writing by Gozde Bayar

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