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Turkey

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 28th November 2014.

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Photo of Menzies Campbell Menzies Campbell Liberal Democrat, North East Fife

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with the government of Turkey about (a) relations with Kurds in the region and (b) the Kurdistan Workers' Party; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of David Lidington David Lidington The Minister for Europe

We maintain a regular dialogue with the Turkish government on relations with the Kurds in the region. The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right Hon Friend the Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), discussed the situation in Kobane and the PKK with the Turkish Foreign Minister when they spoke on 9 October.

We value greatly Turkey’s generosity in hosting over 190,000 refugees that have fled the fighting in Kobane, in addition to the 1.6 million refugees from Syria and Iraq already residing in Turkey. The Department for International Development has already responded to the urgent needs of Syrian Kurdish refugees that have fled to Turkey, and remains ready to react swiftly to further developments.

We also welcome continued efforts by the Turkish government to take forward the Kurdish peace process, including through the introduction of legislation addressing minority rights and consultation with civil society. The UK stands ready to help in any way we can.

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