Ankara (UNA-OIC) � Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday praised Turkish people for their firm stance on the Jerusalem issue in his New Year message.
In the video message issued by the Presidency, Erdogan said the Jerusalem issue is a test for all the Muslims around the world.
Jerusalem issue has turned into a new test for Muslims and the oppressed people around the world, alongside our nation and the region, he stated.
I offer my gratitude to my people for their firm stance and sincere attitude on the issue, the president added.
U.S. President Donald Trump's December 6 announcement about the change in U.S. policy on Jerusalem sparked worldwide criticism, Anadolu Agency reported.
On December 21, the UN General Assembly overwhelming adopted a Turkish-sponsored resolution rejecting Trump's move by a vote of 128-9, with 35 abstentions.
The president said the country took rather significant steps against the terrorist organization, particularly FETO and PKK/PYD in the year 2017.
FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fethullah Gulen orchestrated the July 15 coup attempt that left 250 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
The PKK is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey as well as the U.S. and EU. In its more than three-decade terror campaign against Turkey, more than 40,000 people have been killed.
Since the group resumed its armed campaign in July 2015, more than 1,200 people, including security force personnel and civilians, have lost their lives.
Erdogan also mentioned the economic growth of 7.4 percent in the first three quarters and more than $155 billion exports in 2017.
On his 34 overseas visits to 25 countries, Erdogan said: We tried to represent our country at the highest level in the international arena.
The president also said it is Turkey's strategic priority to reduce foreign source dependency.
So, we are determined to pursue our projects in energy, defense industry, and high technology with the additional ones, he added.
For his part, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim also greeted the nation on the New Year's Eve. I wish the New Year brings peace, tranquility, and stability to the Turkish nation, our region and the entire world, Yildirim said in a statement issued. The premier said Turkey aims at growth, investment and employment opportunities in 2018.
Yildirim also noted that Turkey assumes the role of leader in establishing peace in the world. Referring to Jerusalem issue, he said Turkey shaped the decisions on the issue by gathering an extraordinary meeting of Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and taking the issue to the United Nations General Assembly.
Source: International Islamic News Agency