HomeResearchChanging Dynamic of Turkey-Arab Relationship: An Overview

Changing Dynamic of Turkey-Arab Relationship: An Overview

IntroductionAfter a decade of political impasse and diplomatic and strategic confrontation between Turkey on one hand and Egypt-UAE-Saudi Arabia-Bahrain Quartet on the other, winds of normalisation have started blowing across the region. A dawn of diplomatic recalibration seems to have set in where regional dialogue and diplomatic negotiations are making a comeback. Over the months these attempts have moved beyond formal statements to visits and meetings among the regional leaders and senior officials. Despite these perceptible changes, one however needs to see if these trends are long lasting because the geopolitics in the region has been very transitory in nature since the outbreak of the Arab uprisings.During the first decade of Justice and Development Party (AKP)?s rule (2002-2010) in Turkey under Recep Taayip Erdogan, then Prime Minister of Turkey,  Arab world had become the focal point of Turkish foreign policy both formally and informally[i] which was long neglected due to Turkey?s westward pursuit. But with the outbreak of the Arab uprising in 2011 and subsequent Turkey?s support to the revolutionaries and its embrace of the Islamist forces, the warmth in the relationship with the Arab world not only waned but an era of ideological confrontation and strategic conflict followed.The Gulf monarchs and the status quoist rulers of the Arab Republics conceived the Arab uprising as a threat to their rule. Turkey not only exhorted the revolutionary trends  through its Islamist ideology but intended to shape the course of the revolutions as well. Turkey?s long-cherished philosophy of ?Zero problem with the Neighbors? 

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