Ankara to Host 3 VIPs
(zaman.com) - Over the next few days, Ankara is set to play host to foreign ministers from three important countries.
Aside from important issue of the peace processes in Iraq in particular, and the Middle East in general, the crisis over Irans continued nuclear activities and concerns over the security of energy will top the list of topics set for discussion between Turkish officials and ministers from Russia, Israel and Germany, reports Trend.
Tzipi Livni, the Israeli foreign minister, is expected to arrive in Ankara today, Sunday, but she will meet with the Turkish officials tomorrow.
Turkey is the first country that Livni will visit to a foreign country since the new government was sworn in.
Aide from Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, Ambassador Yigit Alpogan, Secretary-General of the National Security Council, will also meet with the Israeli foreign minister.
Talks among officials are expected to focus on Irans engagement in nuclear activities, as well as the future of the Middle Eastern peace process after it gained a new dimension when HAMAS came to power as a radical Islamic movement in Palestine.
The administration in Tel Aviv presses the government in Turkey to take a tougher position against Iran; however, there is very little likelihood that the Turkish government will bow to pressure from Israel.
During the Gul-Livni meeting, it will be confirmed that the HAMAS crisis is in the past.
HAMAS political leader Khalid Meshals brief visit to Turkey in February had caused a short-term problem in the relations between Israel and Turkey.
The Israeli minister will expectedly send the message, We are looking at the future, not to the past, while Gul will inform that, Turkey had wanted to convey the international communitys demands to HAMAS before it was too late.
The four party pipeline project including transportation of water, unrefined oil, natural gas and electricity will also be handled during the meeting.
The feasibility study of the project will expectedly start after the meeting. It is estimated that the project will be completed within 10 years.
Another important visitor due to arrive in Ankara on Wednesday is Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov who is expected to focus on Iran for the most part, as well as on regional problems, energy matters and relationships during his talks.
UN Security Council Member Russia and another Council member, China, oppose any military intervention in Iran.
Ankara is of the same mind with Russia and will reveal that a diplomatic solution should be found in the negotiations.
Bilateral relationships between Russia and Turkey are expected to be developed within the multilateral and strengthened partnership agreed upon during Vladimir Putins Ankara visit in December 2004.
Turkey refusing give into demands from the US administration to take part in the NATO-led operations in the Black Sea region had contributed to the strain on Ankara-Moscow relations.
Another important topic on Lavrovs Istanbul agenda is expected to be energy.
Moscow plans to extend the Blue Stream pipeline in order to establish alternative pipelines to reach Europe.
It aims to extending the pipeline, which currently reaches as far as Samsun, to Ceyhan and markets Siberian gas to Lebanon and Israel via the Mediterranean Sea.
In return, Ankara will seek support from Moscow, a permanent member of the United Nations (UN) Security Council, once again in relation to the Cyprus issue.
Meanwhile, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier will conduct an official visit to Ankara in early June.
Some of the issues to be discussed during the visit are Turkeys European Union (EU) membership process, and the problems facing Turks living in Germany and Iran.