Turkish Deputy PM see thaw in ties with Middle East

Jordan's King Abdullah II (L) and Egypt's President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi (R) review the honour guard upon their arrival at King Abdullah Airbase Marka in Amman on December 11, 2014. AFP PHOTO/ KHALIL MAZRAAWI

Turkey has moved to revive broken ties with Middle Eastern countries, including Syria, Egypt and the Gulf states, according to Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç, who stressed the "friendship and brotherhood" amid the ongoing crises in bilateral relations.

Speaking at the 5th Bosphorus Summit of Turkish Exporters Assembly (TİM) on Dec. 12, Arınç named Syria and Iran as "neighbors," while mentioning Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, as well as Egypt and Jordan, as "traditional friends who we have been acting together as allies."

Turkey's policy regarding Syria had changed radically as a result of the ongoing war, leading to an era of hostility between Ankara and Damascus which previously enjoyed a decade of cooperation and closeness.

As a rare issue of disagreement in the normally warm relations with Turkey, Iran firmly sides with the Syrian regime.

Ties between Ankara and Cairo, on the other hand, have been strained since then army chief Abdel Fattah el-Sisi toppled elected President Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood last year after mass protests against his rule.

So far, Turkey had sticked to its uncompromising policy vis-à-vis whom it labeled as "the coup makers" in Cairo, contrasting with the more pragmatic policies of its allies in the Middle East, including the Gulf states. 

"(W)e could have experienced a coldness with the countries that I listed, regarding politics or about the attitude of the administrators of these countries; but we are friends, and we are also brothers. The coldness between Turkey and these countries was the result of certain reasons and it is being rapidly thawed now," Arınç added.

Turkish Deputy PM also argued that Ankara's relations with the region will...

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