A statement from the Turkish president’s office said that after arriving in Saudi Arabia, President Erdogan met with King Salman at an official ceremony at the Al-Salam Palace on the shores of the Red Sea in Jeddah. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia, was present on the occasion. Later, Erdogan and Mohammed bin Salman had a private meeting.
According to the Turkish President’s Office, President Erdoয়an is visiting Saudi Arabia at the invitation of the King. The visit is aimed at easing tensions between Ankara and Riyadh.
The visit of the Turkish leader is expected to cut the years-long feud between the two influential countries in the Muslim world over the assassination of journalist and Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Although hostility has been noticed in recent years, the two countries once had close ties.
In 2016, Jamal Khashoggi was assassinated at the Saudi embassy in Istanbul. Accusations were also leveled against Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Turkey and Saudi Arabia had differing views on Khashoggi’s assassination. With this, the relations between the two countries deteriorated. This is President Erdogan’s first visit to Saudi Arabia since the assassination of Khashoggi.
Ahead of his visit to Saudi Arabia, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said his visit was aimed at improving political, military and cultural ties between the two countries. After Khashoggi’s assassination, relations between the two countries came to a standstill. And he said both countries would benefit from stronger cooperation in health, power, food security, the defense industry and the financial sector.