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Turkey in push to reinstate Morsi

January 30, 2014 at 1:49 pm

Turkey is making intensive efforts to push the international community to reinstate Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, Hurriyet Daily News said on Monday. Its Western and Arab allies’ hesitation to criticise the military coup is, said the newspaper, “a disappointment” to the government in Ankara. It said that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu have contacted the UN, US, EU and Arab countries such as Qatar to discuss the issue.

“Our message is clear,” said Davutoglu. “We want the world to call what happened in Egypt a coup. Military coups are not acceptable either in Egypt or any other place.” The reinstatement of the deposed president and his government has to be a priority for countries which believe in real democracy, he insisted. “The fact that Turkey was alone amongst its allies to condemn the coup was disappointing.”

Support from Qatar and Saudi Arabia for the coup could, the newspaper warned, affect their alliance with Turkey over the Syrian crisis.

A senior official in the Turkish foreign ministry, who asked to remain anonymous, told Hurriyet, “We made clear that the process in Egypt will be an important test for the Arab Spring. We hope that they revise their positions.”

Washington described Morsi’s removal as a “military intervention”. According to Hurriyet, the language is important as far as Turkey is concerned because a “coup” would mean that the US can use its financial leverage with the Egyptian army.

Turkey built up strong cooperation with Morsi’s government before he was removed and speculation is rife about whether this would be retained with the interim regime. It has extended the term of office of its ambassador in Cairo pending further developments.