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Erdogan hopes fence-mending trip to Saudi Arabia eases financial woes

Following normalization with the UAE in November, Erdogan plans to pursue reconciliation with Saudi Arabia next month, pressed by financial woes at home, as both sides appear ready to leave the Khashoggi affair behind.
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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is gearing up for a fence-mending visit to Saudi Arabia next month, hoping for financial benefits above all as simmering economic woes threaten his political fortunes at home. Erdogan’s trip to the kingdom would be another milestone in Ankara’s quest to reconcile with Arab heavyweights, following normalization with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and overtures with Egypt after years of rivalry.

Erdogan’s plan for a February visit to Riyadh became public knowledge shortly after Ibrahim Kalin, a senior presidential aide, asserted that Ankara would “accelerate normalization steps” in the region this year. Erdogan blurted the planned visit as he left a gathering of Turkish exporters Jan. 3 after a businesswoman asked him to resolve trade hitches with Saudi Arabia. “He is expecting me in February,” Erdogan said, without naming his contact.

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