Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in his address to a joint sitting of the Pakistani Parliament here on Monday termed the economic progress essential for strengthening of the democratic process.
In his second address to Pakistan’s Parliament, the visiting Turkish prime minister said democracy can never be established with ease and described the people as its biggest source of strength.
“Parliament represents the people and no one can stand in front of it,” he asserted.
Appreciating Pakistan’s endeavours towards fighting terrorism, he said Turkey and Pakistan would continue to make joint efforts for establishment of peace in the region. He said Pakistan and Turkey were two strong nations of the region which had always trusted each other and would continue to do so in the future. “We continue to remain an example for the world,” he remarked.
Erdogan believed that efforts for the improvement in Afghanistan’s situation would also be seen positively in Pakistan.
Referring to the 2005 earthquake in Muzaffarabad, he said he had visited the affected region three times. The houses being built for the flood-hit people with the assistance of Turkey would be handed over to them towards the end of this year, he added.
In an oblique reference to ongoing political divisions in Pakistan, Erdogan said an opposition in a democratic system played the role of a watchdog and did not necessarily target the government for dismantling it.
In his speech Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani described the friendship between Pakistan and Turkey as time-tested. He said with its political and economic development Turkey had become a role model for Pakistan and other Islamic countries.