News Centre – TDO - Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to Turkey Velid bin Abdulkerim El-Hireyci has hosted a reception at the Ankara JW Marriott Hotel to mark the 88th anniversary of Saudi Arabia’s independence.

The reception was attended by Minister of Justice Abdülhamit Gül, Minister for the Family, Work and Social Services Zehra Zümrüt, Minister for Youth and Sports Mehmet Muharrem Kasapoğlu, Deputy Foreign Minister Yavuz Selim Kıran, AK Party Deputy Chairpersons Jülide Sarıeroğlu and Lütfi Elvan, AK Party MP for Kayseri Taner Yıldız, AK Party MP for Ankara Emrullah İşler, AK Party MP for Diyarbakır Mehdi Eker, Mayor of Ankara Metropolitan Municipality Mustafa Tuna, President of Religious Affairs Ali Erbaş, President of Defence Industry İsmail Demir, former Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Şimşek and many members of diplomatic missions and journalists in Ankara.

The reception began after Ambassador Hireyci greeted guests at the entrance and the anthems of the two countries were played.

In his speech, Minister of Justice Gül said that Turkey and Saudi Arabia had shared strong ties and added “Our cooperation grows constantly, based on mutual interest and respect. We see Saudi Arabia as a strategically important country in our region. That it acts as the servant of Al-Harameyn increases the strategic importance of Saudi Arabia throughout the Islamic world.”

Stating that Turkey values ties with Saudi Arabia, Gül said "The two countries share the same political will to take our relations even further."

Gül also said that that establishment of the Turkish-Saudi Coordination Council in 2016 and it holding its first meeting last year in February was an open indicator of the determination of the two countries to develop ties and said "We desire that a second meeting of the council will soon take place in Riyadh, where new cooperation projects that are important for both countries will be taken up.”

Ambassador Hireyci said that the leaders of Turkey and Saudi Arabia had a strong approach in their policies and attitudes towards other countries that calls for mutual tolerance, spreading of peace and respect for principles of human rights.

Ambassador Hireyci said "The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Republic of Turkey are connected by historical ties and share many cultural, civil and religious points. I would like to point out that the two important countries have put their weight in the regional balances for the solution of ongoing crises in the region. The cooperation between the two countries will certainly be to the advantage of our peoples.”

Ambassador Hireyci wished that the security, welfare and development of Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the Islamic nation will prove permanent.

Following the speeches, a celebratory cake was cut and the reception proceeded with Saudi Arabia’s traditional folk dance with swords and food offered to guests.

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