Tacan İLDEM 15.03.2012
15 MARCH 2012

I join the previous speakers in warmly welcoming you Mr. Minister and thanking you for today’s very insightful presentation of Jordan’s position vis-à-vis the Middle East Peace Process and the “Arab awakening” and also for updating us regarding the reforms in Jordan.

The process of reform and transformation keeps unfolding in the region. As more than a year has passed since its inception, the process has already proven to be enduring and far-reaching. Pace, scope and context of reform will naturally vary in accordance with the specific characteristics of each country under transition. What has become crystal clear by now is that the legitimate aspirations of the people can neither be suppressed nor postponed. No one can resist against the flow of history. Therefore, moving in its direction will be the wisest course of action.

In this context, we wholeheartedly welcome the visionary reforms that have been initiated in Jordan. Like other countries under transition, Jordan needs and deserves our full support and cooperation in terms of capacity-building and economic development. Peaceful, orderly and gradual transformation in these countries in accordance with the legitimate expectations of their peoples will surely contribute to peace, stability and prosperity of the region.

Turkey and Jordan share deep-rooted common history and strong cultural bonds. Turkey also shares the vision that preservation of stability in Jordan is of crucial importance for preservation of peace, stability and security in the region. In this respect, we are committed to provide our support and cooperation through the OSCE, other international and regional organizations and through bilateral channels.

Indeed, intensifying OSCE’s dialogue and cooperation with our Partners for Co-operation, including Jordan, is an issue that we attach great importance. With this in mind Turkey contributed actively to the drafting of the Vilnius Ministerial Decision on Partners for Cooperation, which aims at strengthening our capacity to respond to the needs and priorities identified by the Partners. The framework for cooperation between the OSCE and its Partners, as strengthened by that decision, offers fertile ground where Jordan may benefit from the best practices and experience gained in the development of comprehensive, co-operative and indivisible security, in the three dimensions. We will be expecting Jordan to set its own priorities in the light of its own requirements on areas that the OSCE could be of particular relevance in the already started and impressive reform process in Jordan.

It is our sincere hope that the recent developments in the region will have positive impact on the Middle East Peace Process. We cannot think the Palestinian question in isolation from the climate of the Arab Spring currently prevailing in the region. As we emphasize the importance of addressing the legitimate aspirations of the people in the region, we can neither ignore nor postpone the legitimate and long-standing aspirations of the Palestinians for a state of their own. Therefore, we commend and highly appreciate the efforts of Jordan in facilitating exploratory talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. We regret that these talks could not produce tangible results.

Last but not least, since you have alluded to it, Mr. Minister, I would also like to express our concern with the escalating grave human rights violations and the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Syria. Despite the failure of the UN Security Council to take an urgent action on that tragedy, we maintain our belief that international community will not assume an indifferent attitude towards this bloodshed. The decision taken by the UN Human Rights Council on the initiative of Turkey on 1st of March is a clear manifestation of international resolve on this issue. Turkey urges Syrian authorities to bring an immediate end to violence and allow for free and unimpeded access by the UN and humanitarian agencies, as reflected in the final declaration of the “Friends of the Syrian People” held in Tunis, on 24 February. As the two countries neighboring Syria, we believe that Turkey and Jordan will continue to act in accordance with their responsibilities regarding the situation in that country.

In conclusion, let me express once more our willingness to increase our interaction with Jordan in the OSCE as well in order to develop a mutually beneficial cooperation based on its priorities.

Thank you.