Hamas leader Haniyeh to visit Turkey this weekend: Erdogan

AFP , Wednesday 17 Apr 2024

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Wednesday he will host the leader of Palestinian group Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh, in Turkey this weekend.

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File photo - Hamas Chief Ismail Haniyeh. AFP

 

"The leader of the Palestinian cause will be my guest this weekend," Erdogan told lawmakers.

"Even if only I, Tayyip Erdogan, remain, I will continue as long as God gives me my life, to defend the Palestinian struggle and to be the voice of the oppressed Palestinian people," the president said.

Erdogan did not say where he would meet the Hamas political leader, but NTV television reported that they would hold talks on Saturday at the Dolmabahce Palace in Istanbul.

Their last meeting was in July 2023 when Erdogan hosted Haniyeh and Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas at the presidential palace in Ankara.

But Haniyeh met Turkey's Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan in Turkey on January 2, the government said.

Qatar, a mediator between Israel and Hamas, acknowledged Wednesday that negotiations to cease hostilities in Gaza and liberate captives were "stalling".

The Turkish leader has forged friendly ties with Haniyeh, who is based in Qatar.

Last week, Erdogan offered Haniyeh, 62, condolences for the death of his three sons and some of his grandchildren in an Israeli strike in Gaza.

 

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