Saudi crown prince visits Turkey as countries normalize ties

AP , Wednesday 22 Jun 2022

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is scheduled to arrive in Ankara on Wednesday, making his first visit to Turkey as the two regional heavyweights press ahead with efforts to repair ties following the slaying of Saudi columnist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul.

Mohammed bin Salman   Erdogan
File Photo: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan left, and Saudi Arabia s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman speak after their meeting in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia, on April 29, 2022. AP


The crown prince will meet President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the last leg of a Middle East tour that also took him to Egypt and Jordan. His visit comes before U.S. President Joe Biden's trip to the region next month.

Erdogan said talks with the prince, who is commonly referred to by his initials MBS, would focus on advancing Turkish-Saudi relations to a ``much higher degree.'' Erdogan visited Saudi Arabia in April, paying his first visit to the kingdom since 2017, a year before the gruesome killing of Khashoggi by Saudi agents in the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul.

Turkey's efforts to improve ties with Saudi Arabia comes as Turkey faces its worst economic crisis in two decades and is trying to draw investments from wealthy Gulf Arab states. Turkey has also taken steps to improve relations with the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Israel.

Talks with the UAE's Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan late last year led to investment deals worth $10 billion after years of regional rivalry.

*This story was edited by Ahram Online


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