Kashgar, where Muslim Uighurs make up the vast majority of the population, was Davutoğlu’s first stop during his ongoing six-day visit to China, which kicked off on Thursday. Davutoğlu was in Urumqi, the capital of the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, populated by ethnic Turkic Muslim Uighurs, on Thursday. There, along with his spouse, Sare Davutoğlu, he hosted a breakfast meeting for the delegation accompanying him and the authorities in the region to celebrate Republic Day.
“The Turkish flag is not only the flag of a nation-state; it is at the same time the flag of the consciousness of independence that rose at the time against imperialism. That is why, when we celebrate Republic Day, we also give a message to other nations: the importance of independence, honor and freedom,” Davutoğlu said, as he cut the celebration cake with authorities of the region. Davutoğlu also expressed confidence that the Turkey-China friendship, which dates back to the founding of the Republic of Turkey, will last forever. Before proceeding to the city of Xian later on Friday, Davutoğlu visited industrial facilities and historical places, including a mosque, in Urumqi.