The trip came after a Saudi journalist in Istanbul looked to restore relations between the two countries following the 2013 assassination.
Turkish Foreign Minister arrives in Saudi Arabia for talks, his first visit since the 2018 assassination of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul has further strained relations between the two countries.
Mevlুটt Cavusoglu’s visit is aimed at strengthening ties with Rivada through new clashes on the grounds of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Israeli-occupied East Jerusalem.
Turkish officials said the visit to Cavusoglu could include talks on the possible sale of Turkish drones to Saudi Arabia, which they said Riyadh had requested.
Inside # Saudi Arabia To discuss bilateral relations and important regional issues, particularly the attack on the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the persecution of the Palestinian people. pic.twitter.com/9SKoE52ifP
– Mevlat Ivueolu (masslutcavusoglu) May 10, 2021
“To discuss bilateral relations and important regional issues in Saudi Arabia, especially the attack on the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the persecution of the Palestinian people,” he wrote on Twitter.
Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani is also visiting Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on Monday evening and will meet with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) and discuss bilateral relations and common interests in regional and international issues.
Qatar has close ties with Turkey and the two-year-old Gulf state could facilitate a second round of talks with Riyadh after reaching a milestone in a three-year-old dispute in January. A statement from Amir’s office did not provide further details.
More than 300 Palestinians were injured on Monday after Israeli police fired rubber-coated bullets and tear gas at worshipers at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
Ankara’s relations with Riyadh deteriorated sharply after the October 59 assassination of Saudi journalist Khashoggi, 59, wrote a critical column for the Washington Post.
Khashoggi was assassinated by a group of Saudi agents and broke into the Kingdom Consulate in Istanbul after entering a diplomatic compound to obtain documents before his marriage to Turkey’s fiance Hatice Sengiz.
His death and subsequent disappearance of his body have tarnished the image of MBS and plunged Riyadh into a diplomatic crisis.
The crisis prompted a private Saudi trade boycott that reduced the value of Turkish imports by 98 percent. Saudi Arabia is also closing eight Turkish schools in the state, Anadolu reported last month.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said at the time that the order to assassinate Khashoggi had come from senior Saudi officials.
Turkey, along with two other suspects, has also faced trial in the absence of two close associates of the Crown Prince.
Saudi interest in Turkish drones
But Turkey is taking steps to establish relations with Saudi Arabia, which remains an important trading partner.
Last week, Erdogan spoke by phone with Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz, although no details of the talks have been released.
Cavusoglu’s two-day visit comes after Turkey held talks with Egypt last week, another regional power allied with the United States aimed at restoring volatile relations.
A senior Turkish official says trade sanctions and the conflict in Syria and Libya will be discussed with Saudi Arabia. Saudi requests for Turkish armed drones could also be on the agenda, two Turkish officials said.
Erdogan said in March that Saudi Arabia wanted to buy Turkish unmanned aerial vehicles. Several countries have expressed interest in drones, which were used in the conflicts in Syria, Libya and Nagorno-Karabakh.