Turkey’s olive branches have prickly effect on Saudis

Grappling with serious economic woes, Turkey is seeking to normalize ties with Saudi Arabia, but some of its fence-mending have badly backfired.

Foreign Minister of Turkey Mevlut Cavusoglu is seen during a preparatory meeting for the GCC, Arab and Islamic summits in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, May 29, 2019. REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

Turkey has taken a number of recent steps that can be seen as efforts to normalize ties with Saudi Arabia: the foreign minister’s attendance of the Islamic summit in Mecca, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Eid al-Fitr phone call to King Salman and Ankara’s condemnation of the Houthi attack on the Saudi Abha airport. It's a good start, but the relationship remains shaky amid the moves that have badly backfired.

For Turkey, a continued flow of capital from the Gulf is crucial at the moment, with its ailing economy facing new threats of US sanctions due to  on procuring a Russian air defense system. Moreover, the continuation of open enmity with Saudi Arabia and the United

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from Al-Monitor

Al-Monitor5 min read
Turkey Faces Losses In Syria East, West Of The Euphrates River
Ankara’s attempts to play Russia and the United States off against each other may be gaining it very little and could leave it losing more than it expected.
Al-Monitor3 min read
New Iranian Hard-line Group Seeks To Expel Parliament Speaker From Their Camp
Iranian hard-liners say parliament Speaker Ali Larijani has become soft on conservative issues and seek to remove him from their grouping for good.
Al-Monitor4 min readPolitics
Netanyahu’s Worst Nightmare: A Trump-Rouhani Meeting
The G-7 statement by US President Donald Trump about Iran changing is the worst nightmare Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu could have ever imagined.