Egypt, Turkey eye new phase of bilateral relations

Sami Hegazi
2 Min Read

Turkey’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu announced the start of a new phase of his country’s relations with Egypt, indicating the possibility of mutual visits and talks.

In remarks to reporters on Wednesday, Çavuşoğlu said that a Turkish-Egyptian meeting is expected at the level of the two countries’ assistant foreign ministers, and that work is underway to determine the date.

The minister pointed out that the issue of appointing an ambassador to Egypt has not been discussed yet, but the issue could be raised at the meeting. 

Çavuşoğlu had taken the month of Ramadan as an occasion to speak with his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry, to congratulate him on the advent of the holy month. Observers saw the phone call as a new attempt by Ankara to get closer to Egypt.

Turkey recently began to change its rhetoric about its relations with Egypt, after a tense phase between the two. It talked about the existence of intelligence and diplomatic contacts with Egypt, despite reports that these talks had stalled.

Regarding media platforms used by the Muslim Brotherhood, which is outlawed in Egypt, Ankara announced earlier that it had bound these anti-Cairo channels to media ethics codes.

Although Egypt welcomed the move, it stressed the need for further steps to build trust and restore relations.

Cairo stressed that upgrading the level of the relationship between the two countries requires taking into account the legal and diplomatic frameworks that govern relations between countries. This is on the basis of respecting the principle of sovereignty and the requirements of Arab national security.

In recent months, Turkish officials have made a series of statements flirting with Cairo, talking about “strong ties” between the two countries.

Relations between Egypt and Turkey have been at a standstill for over eight years, due to several files, most notably Ankara’s Mediterranean policy, its embrace of the Muslim Brotherhood, and its military intervention in the Libyan crisis.

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