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    US-Turkey counter-terrorism cooperation to continue

    Hurriyet English with wires
    28.05.2008 - 18:06 | Son Güncelleme:

    The United States wanted to continue cooperation with Turkey in counter-terrorism, U.S.Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff said on Wednesday in the Turkish capital of Ankara, the Anatolian Agency reported. (UPDATED)

    Chertoff said on Wednesday that the United States wanted to continue cooperation with Turkey in counter-terrorism.  

     

    Chertoff, currently paying a working trip to Turkey, met Turkish State Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Cemil Cicek, said he came to Ankara to hold meetings about cooperation between Turkey and the United States to deal with terrorism.   

    The U.S. official said his visit was a reflection of strong and deep ties between Turkey and the United States in the area of counter-terrorism and other areas as well. 

     

    Chertoff said "all democracies are potentially at risk," and that terrorism was a global threat, noting that global stance should be assumed together against this threat.

    "Al Qaeda is still very intent on carrying out attacks on anybody they perceive as democratic, free and promoters of values of respect," Chertoff said, reminding that Turkey was also a country that became a target of al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations attacks in the recent years.

     

    Chertoff said he did not have specific information that there was any plan against Turkey, adding that all the parties that were after freedom, and ensuring peace and security were face to face with the same risk.

     

    He met Turkish Interior Minister Besir Atalay in Ankara later on Wednesday.


    Turkey has stepped up military action against the PKK, which is listed as a terrorist group by much of the international community including the EU and the U.S., since December, carrying out several air strikes and a week-long ground incursion into northern Iraq in February, where it says more than 2,000 PKK separatists take refuge.

     

    The United States has backed Turkey's military action in Iraq by providing intelligence on PKK movements there. Turkey has also revived dialogue with the Kurdish administration of northern Iraq, whom it has long accused of tolerating and even aiding the PKK, in a bid to enlist their cooperation against the PKK.

     

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