Serbia supports Turkey in its fight against the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), the terror group behind the 2016 defeated coup in Turkey, Serbia’s Interior Minister said on Sunday.
Nebojsa Stefanovic’s remarks came at the “Salcano Turkey-Serbia Friendship Bicycle Race” commemorating those martyred in the July 15 failed coup attempt.
Representing Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, Stefanovic underlined that the fight against FETO was of great importance to Serbia as well.
“In the coup attempt three years ago, those who thought that they could defeat Turkish people and the state received a strong and effective response from the Turkish people,” he said, stressing that the popular Turkish will should be respected.
Stefanovic said Serbia continued to support Turkey’s fight against terrorism as it did three years ago.
“We want to fight against all forms of terrorism and organized crime with Turkey. Cooperation between the two countries has been reflected in all areas, with the initiatives of the two countries’ presidents, Aleksandar Vucic and Recep Tayyip Erdogan,” he said.
Meanwhile, Turkey’s ambassador to Belgrade, Tanju Bilgic, thanked the Serbian authorities who always supported Turkey’s fight against FETO.
Turkey’s Embassy in the country organized the “Turkish-Serbian Friendship Cup” in cooperation with the Bicycle Association of Serbia.
The event also aimed to honor the bravery of the Turkish people against the coup attempt.
Twelve teams from Serbia, Israel, Hungary, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Belarus, Great Britain, Slovakia, Croatia, France, Czech Republic, Bulgaria and Turkey participated in the race.
Serbian Minister of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications Rasim Ljajic and State Secretary in the Ministry of Youth and Sports Predrag Perunicic were among the crowds who gathered at the event.
FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup on July 15, 2016, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
Ankara also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.