Turkey to launch international mobilization for Palestinian state’s recognition

An Israeli soldier stopping Palestinian civilians.

Turkey could “declare a mobilization” in the international arena for the recognition of a new Palestinian state, Turkey’s prime minister has said, voicing strong backing for Palestinian aspirations to an independent state.

“Turkey is determined to support Palestine [in its bid] to become a member of the United Nations,” Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said in a press conference after a meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Friday.

In his four-day visit to Ankara to seek support to solve a dispute with Hamas on establishing a unity government, Abbas received strong promises of help on the matter.

While backing Palestinian ambitions to found their own state, Ankara also urged both Abbas and Hamas leader Khalid Meshaal to end their disagreements on who would be the new prime minister of the unity government. Meshaal had talks with Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu in Istanbul on Tuesday.

“Establishing an independent and viable state, whose capital will be east Jerusalem, is the basic condition to solve this problem,” Erdoğan said referring to the Middle East peace process with Israel.

The prime minister said Turkey would host meetings for ambassadors of Palestine from various countries in Istanbul on 23-24 July.

“We are continuing on the path of reconciliation and there will be no turning back,” Abbas said in the press conference.

“We will make all efforts possible until the unity of our nation is achieved and a transitional government is established,” he said.

Abbas said countries that have not yet recognized the independent Palestine state should recognize it in order to support peace and stability.

Al-Fatah and Hamas have argued over who will be the next prime minister of the unity government. A meeting of al-Fatah and Hamas leaders in Cairo on Tuesday was postponed due to Hamas opposition to the reappointment of Western-backed economist Salam Fayyad.

Turkey has urged Abbas and Meshaal groups to take advantage of the high moral ground they achieved with their agreement to form a unity government, stressing Palestinian groups should be united to properly use the leverage they achieved.

Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa al-Thani, meanwhile, arrived in Ankara on Friday to hold talks with Turkish officials.