Turkey 'crucial' for long-term peace in Balkans

Published 10.09.2019 00:17

Long-term peace in the Balkans is impossible without Turkey, according to a top politician from North Macedonia.

Afrim Gashi, the leader of the BESA political party, who is also part of the broad government coalition in northern Macedonia, evaluated the latest developments in the Western Balkans and his country's relations with Turkey.

"Turkey plays an important role in the dialogue between Serbia and Kosovo," Gashi told Anadolu Agency (AA). "Long-term peace in the Balkans is impossible without Turkey."

"Turkey's involvement would not only facilitate an agreement between Serbia and Kosovo, but it would also benefit Turkey to have good relations with Albanians. Also, as a NATO member and a strong U.S. partner in NATO, Turkey can be the guarantor of peace," he added.

Gashi stressed the need for dialogue that would eventually lead to mutual recognition, adding that such an agreement would improve Kosovo-Serbia relations and bring long-term peace to the Balkans as well.

He also said they had very productive meetings during a recent delegation visit to Turkey, which he led.

Gashi explained that the aim of the visit was to attract Turkish investors to North Macedonia and to improve economic relations as well as institutional ties between the two countries.

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