Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan stated that, following rare discussions with a senior Emirati official, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), fierce Middle East rivals, have been in contact in recent months and have made some progress.
Erdoğan said he and UAE National Security Adviser Sheikh Tahnoun bin Zayed Al Nahyan discussed investment opportunities in Turkey on Wednesday, and that if the talks go well, the UAE will make major investments in the country.
The Turkish president also stated that he was willing to meet with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the UAE’s de facto ruler.
Turkey and the UAE have backed opposite sides in regional conflicts such as the Libyan crisis and the Arab powers’ blockade of Qatar, among other things. The UAE also backs Greece’s energy claims in contested Eastern Mediterranean waters, where Turkey pressed for fresh natural gas exploration last year.
Erdoğan stated in a televised interview that talks with Abu Dhabi, which have been going on for a few months and are being directed by Turkish intelligence, had reached a significant point.
“I believe that there will be more talks in the coming period. We are in favour of the main actors in the region directly negotiating and solving problems,” Erdoğan expressed.