Saturday 24th of August 2019, 17:40 CET
Foundation Of New Border Gate Between Turkey And Bulgaria Laid
September 30, 2002
Turkish Press

Posted by HW on August 24, 2019

Foundation of new border gate between Turkey and Bulgaria was laid by Bulgarian President Georgi Purvanov and Deputy Prime Minister and Public Works Minister Kostadin Paskalev.
The border gate will be opened between Hamzabeyli village in Lalapasa township of northwestern Edirne province and Lesovo village of Bulgaria.

Speaking at the ceremony, Purvanov said that Turkey and Bulgaria had high-level and friendly relations.

Purvanov noted that Turkey and Bulgaria were having a friendship and cooperation which had not been seen in the Balkans so far.

Political dialogue between the two countries was also good, Purvanov stated and hoped that they could become a NATO member in Prague a month later.

Purvanov pointed out that Turkey would join the European Union (EU) a short time after they entered the union.

Then, there would not be any need for that border gate, Purvanov said. However, he noted, this border gate would bring welfare to regional people.

Paskalev said that opening a new border gate between Turkey and Bulgaria was brought to the agenda in 1993 and noted that they agreed to open the border gate in 1997.

Stating that procedures were launched in 1999, Paskalev said that they planned to complete the initiatives one and a half years later.

Paskalev pointed out that the border gate was important for not only the two countries but also for the Balkans.

Bulgarian Foreign Minister Solomon Pasi said that those who would pass through the border gate could go to anywhere with the routes of Macedonia, Romania, Moldova, Ukraine and Russia.

Turkey"s Ambassador Haydar Berk in Sofia said that the border gate was important.

""This gate will further strengthen cooperation between the two countries. It shows joint will of Turkey and Bulgaria. The border gate, besides its symbolic importance, will bring an economic income to those who live in the borders of the two countries. It will form new canals in every field, mainly in trade. We are pleased to provide necessary facilities to those who live in Bulgarian side, to come to Turkey. We expect more people to visit Turkey.""

Berk said the two countries could launch joint efforts on the way to NATO and EU.

Following the speeches, President Purvanaov of Bulgaria and Deputy Prime Minister Paskalev digged the soil symbolically.

Purvanov shook hands and talked with the Bulgarian citizens after the ceremony.

Responding to the questions of A.A correspondent asking his message for Turkey, Purvanov said the new border gate was a message to Turkish people, adding that he had no doubt that Turkish people would understand the message.

Edirne governor Fahri Yucel said, ""with the activation of the border gates, our trade will further increase. We are planning our workings regarding with the new border gate synchronously with Bulgarians. Burden on Kapikule will be lessened, regarding passenger and trucks, after activation of border gate. I believe that it will have important contributions to the development of the region.
 
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