Turkiye, Saudi Arabia show common will to enhance ties: President Erdogan

I believe my visit will herald new era in bilateral relations, Erdogan tells journalists.

Turkiye, Saudi Arabia show common will to enhance ties: President Erdogan

The Turkish president said on Saturday that Ankara and Riyadh have demonstrated a common will to develop bilateral relations at the highest level.

Speaking to journalists on the presidential plane returning from Saudi Arabia, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkiye and Saudi Arabia are determined to continue this effort for the common interests and stability of the region.

"I believe my visit will herald a new era in the ties between our two countries. We have demonstrated our common will to enhance ties on the basis of mutual respect and trust, most clearly and at the highest level," he said.

Erdogan hoped joint bilateral efforts will bring benefits to both countries, and the region.

On his two-day visit to Saudi Arabia, Erdogan met Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud as well as Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and discussed various international, regional and bilateral issues.

"We focused on the joint steps we can take to improve our relations in the future ... I reiterated our support for the security and stability of Saudi Arabia," said Erdogan.

He emphasized that Turkiye also attaches great importance to the security and stability of the Gulf region.

Ankara and Riyadh agreed on the need to bring together the business people and investors of the two countries, he added.

The Turkish president announced that Turkiye would support Saudi Arabia's bid to host the 2030 World Expo in Riyadh.

Relations between Turkiye and Saudi Arabia deteriorated in recent years, but both countries are now seeking to revive ties.

'Friends, not enemies'

Turkiye has also been in negotiations with Egypt, Israel and the United Arab Emirates to normalize relations.

Erdogan described the new era as a process of making friends and not enemies, and that ties should be improved with countries with whom "we share the same beliefs and thoughts."

He said Turkiye has decisive role in regional relations with Egypt and Israel, and it will gain nothing by completely cutting ties.

"Turkiye has a policy on Israel, and such a policy is also possible with Egypt," Erdogan said, adding that positive outcomes show steps can be taken also at a higher level.

In response to a question on results of the French presidential election, Erdogan said elimination and loss of extremists is a "win for the entire world." President Emmanuel Macron won a second term, defeating far-right candidate Marine Le Penne in the second round of the vote held on April 24.