Danish minister praises Turkish military cooperation

Danish military staff working at Incirlik Air Base in Turkey are “very pleased” with their local counterparts, providing a “good start” to the fight against Daesh, the country’s foreign minister told Anadolu Agency this week.

Kristian Jensen — in Turkey for an official visit — gave an exclusive interview to Anadolu Agency on the Middle East, Turkey’s defeated 15 July coup plot and the ongoing Syria crisis.

Describing fellow NATO member Turkey as a “good ally”, Jensen said Denmark was very pleased with the cooperation it had received at the airbase in Adana province.

The minister also said Denmark had sent a command ship to the Mediterranean Sea after Turkey’s request to strengthen the NATO presence in the region.

“I think this is a good start in the close cooperation between Turkey and Denmark, both in the framework [of the fight] against Daesh,” he added.

-July 15 coup plot-

Jensen visited the Turkish parliament and witnessed the damage done by the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) during the July 15 coup attempt. He voiced support for Turkey‘s counter-terrorism efforts and its people’s role in suppressing the deadly insurrection.

Describing the damage as “frightening” Jensen said if faced with the same threat, Denmark would also have reacted “very strongly” to an attempt to topple the government by force.

Turkey’s government blames FETO for the July 15 plot. At least 241 people were martyred and nearly 2,200 injured in the failed coup which the government said was organized by followers of Fetullah Gulen, head of FETO.

Gulen is accused of leading a long-running campaign to overthrow the Turkish government through the infiltration of state institutions, particularly the military, police and judiciary, forming what is commonly known as the parallel state.

-EU/Turkey relations-

Referring to EU-Turkey relations, Jensen said the two countries remained good partners and depended on each other in many respects, particularly regarding the “peace process in the Middle East, in Syria andIsrael, Yemen,” plus in fighting Daesh.

Jensen also praised Turkey’s migrant policy, especially in hosting many Syrian refugees: “Turkey plays a leading role in the question about migrants and refugees coming not only from Syria but also Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan.”

Jensen also said: “We need to fight against Daesh; we need to find a solution in Syria where the dictator [Bashar al-] Assad has to go and a new Syrian government will be formed by the people of Syria.”