German foreign minister Westerwelle arrives in Turkey for talks
German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle arrived Tuesday evening in Istanbul for talks with top Turkish leaders that were expected to cover regional and Turkish-European issues, dpa reported.
Westerwelle is to meet on Wednesday with his Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoglu as well as with Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan, with the Berlin minister saying beforehand he would stress Germany's great interest in Turkey further orientating itself towards Europe.
Among specific issues will be the Middle East conflict and the controversy over Iran's nuclear programme, in particular Iran's readiness to hold new negotiations on the issue.
In May, under mediation by Turkey and Brazil, the Tehran leadership had agreed to a plan for its uranium to be enriched aborad.
But the West then reacted with scepticism to the proposal for 1,200 kilograms of low-grade enriched uranium from Iran to be shipped to Turkey and traded for more highly-enriched uranium.
Westerwelle arrived from Slovenia, where he paid a brief visit and met with Premier Borut Pahor and Foreign Minister Samuel Zbogar.
There, the Berlin minister issued an appeal for dialogue between Serbia and Kosovo and for "pragmatic, constructive solutions" in the issue of recognition of Kosovo's independence.
Westerwelle said that after last week's ruling by the International Court of Justice recognizing the legality of Kosovo's early-2008 unilateral declaration of independence, the legal process regarding the issue was closed.
It was in the interest of both countries and their people, but also for Europe, that there should be "dialogue and a pragmatic solution to the existing problems," Westerwelle said.