Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi to visit Turkey after years of tension

Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan, the de facto ruler of the United Arab Emirates, will visit Turkey for the first time in years as regional rivals work to mend worn ties, two Turkish officials said on Monday.

The visit, which will include talks with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, is scheduled for November 24, the officials said.

Turkey and the United Arab Emirates have been fighting for influence in the Middle East since the Arab uprisings broke out a decade ago. They have supported opposing sides in Libya’s civil war, and their disputes spread to the eastern Mediterranean and the Gulf before Ankara began a delightful offensive in the region last year.

In August, Erdogan said that Turkey and the UAE had made progress in improving ties, which could lead to significant investment in Turkey, after a rare meeting with the UAE’s national security adviser, the Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed Al Nahyan. Two weeks after their talks, Erdogan had a phone call with Sheikh Mohammed.

The two leaders will discuss bilateral relations, trade, regional developments and investments, one of the Turkish officials said on condition of anonymity. The second official said a final date had not yet been set.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a press conference after a cabinet meeting in Ankara, Turkey, on December 14, 2020 (Credit: PRESIDENTIAL PRESS OFFICE / HANDOUT VIA REUTERS)

“Sheikh Mohammed’s visit will help bring ties to a better place,” the second official said, adding that a “high-level visit” from Turkey would soon be on the agenda.

The UAE Foreign Ministry declined to comment. A communications official for the Turkish presidency could not immediately be reached for comment.

Last year, Turkey accused the UAE of bringing chaos to the Middle East through interventions in Libya and Yemen, while the UAE and others criticized Turkish military actions. Erdogan had also threatened to sever diplomatic ties with the UAE after the Gulf state’s move to normalize ties with Israel.

Ankara’s efforts to repair ties come after similar proposals this year toward Egypt and Saudi Arabia, which have yielded little public progress.

With the deep political differences between Abu Dhabi and Ankara, the two sides have focused on economic ties and de-escalation, rather than solving their ideological gap.

Turkey said it was in talks with the UAE on energy investments, such as power generation. The UAE has said it is seeking deeper business and economic ties with Turkey, and Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth funds have also made significant investments in Turkish online grocery store Getir and e-commerce platform Trendyol.

Turkey and the United Arab Emirates will also hold a business forum in Dubai on November 23.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *