Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday said Turkey would not be disrupted by terror while moving towards its goals.
Speaking at an opening ceremony of a new football arena for Turkish football club Trabzonspor in the northern province of Trabzon, Erdogan said terror aimed at detaching Turkey from its activities and goals as well as imprisoning it on its vicious agenda.
“We will not fall into this trap,” said the Turkish president.
“While maintaining our fight against terror in an uninterrupted and decisive way, we will continue to do our investments, launch our projects, [and] walk towards our goals,” Erdogan added.
In his remarks, the president reiterated the nation will not be divided in the wake of terrorist attacks and vowed the fight against PKK will continue till elimination of the last terrorist.
“Terrorize as much as you want, you will never be able to divide this nation,” Erdogan added.
The modern stadium is named after Senol Gunes who was a legend former Trabzonspor goalkeeper and coach of the national football team.
It has a capacity of more than 40,000 spectators. The construction began in 2013 on an artificially created island of Trabzon’s Akyazi district.
Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani of Qatar was also present at the opening ceremony.
World Condemns bomb attack in Turkey’s Kayseri
World leaders and members of the international community have expressed their condolences and condemnation following the Dec. 17 car bomb attack in the Central Anatolian province of Kayseri which killed 14 soldiers and wounded 56 others.
The United States condemned the “cowardly attack,” showing solidarity with the country against terror.
“We stand united with Turkey, our NATO ally, in our determination to confront and defeat all forms of terrorism,” White House National Security Council spokesman Ned Price said in a statement.
State Department spokesman John Kirby also said the U.S. administration was ready to provide support.
“There is absolutely no justification for inhumane acts perpetrated against the Turkish people by terrorists,” Kirby said.
“We are in close touch with Turkish authorities and have offered our support to the ongoing investigation of this attack,” he added.
“We condemn the terrorist attack in Kayseri. No cause could justify such heinous acts,” the U.S. Embassy in Ankara said in a tweet.
The ambassador of the United Kingdom to Turkey, Richard Moore, also condemned the attack.
“Another dark day for #Turkey. I completely condemn the terrorist attack in Kayseri this morning. My condolences to families of soldiers killed & wishes for speedy recovery to injured. UK stands with Turkey against all terrorism,” Moore tweeted.
Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin conveyed condolences to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and said Moscow was “ready” to cooperate with Ankara in fighting against terrorism, according to Kremlin press service.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov also talked to his Turkish counterpart, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, on the phone following the attack, conveying his condolences.
The attack also drew condemnation from EU officials.
“Strongly condemn terrorist attack in #Kayseri this morning. We stand by #Turkey, its government & people and express our deep sorrow & condolences for the victims of this cowardly act of terror,” the EU delegation to Turkey tweeted.
In a written statement, Thorbjorn Jagland, the secretary-general of the Council of Europe, said terrorist attacks must stop. “They lead only to human suffering and serve no political goal.”
“The Council of Europe stands by Turkey and its people in these difficult times,” Jagland added.
High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy of the European Union Federica Mogherini also phoned Çavuşoğlu and condemned the attack.
“I am deeply saddened about yet another deadly #terror attack in Turkey #Kayseri. Terror sows only pain & hatred. This must end,” Johannes Hahn, commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, tweeted.
Germany denounced the terror attack and voiced solidarity with Turkey in the fight against terrorism.
“Nothing can justify this perfidious violence,” German Foreign Ministry said in a press release.
“We share the grief, stand in solidarity with Turkey,” it said.
“I condemn the horrific terror attack in Kayseri. My thoughts are with the victims and their families. What Turkey really needs is peace,” German EU Minister Michael Roth said.
France also expressed condemnation and voiced support for Turkey’s fighting against terrorism.
“We offer our condolences to the families of the victims and their families,” French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said in a statement.
Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz, meanwhile, said: “My heartfelt condolences for the victims of the bomb attack in Kayseri. We strongly condemn such acts of terror!”
Norwegian Foreign Minister Borge Brende and Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano also phoned Çavuşoğlu to express their condolences.
Canadian Foreign Minister Stephane Dion wrote on Twitter: “I condemn the attack in #Kayseri and offer my condolences to the families and friends of the victims.”
In a statement, Azerbaijani President İlham Aliyev condemned the “bloody incident” and said: “We support you in fighting terrorism that turns into a terrible calamity. We always stand by brotherly Turkey.”
Kuwait also condemned the blast as a terrorist act that targeted innocents.
Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Ministry also said the terror attack was “unacceptable.”
In an official statement, Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid reiterated Egypt’s stance against terrorism.
Qatar also “strongly” condemned the attack, with the country’s Foreign Ministry expressing Doha’s solidarity with Turkey in all measures it takes to maintain its security and stability.
Pakistan’s head of the Foreign Ministry, Sartaj Aziz, condemned terrorist attack in “strongest” terms.
“We condemn in the strongest possible terms the terrorist attack that took place in Kayseri today,” said Aziz.
The PKK — listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU — resumed its decades-old armed campaign in July last year.
More than 300 civilians and about 850 security personnel since then have been martyred. More than 9,000 PKK terrorists have been killed or apprehended.