Turkish FM comments on Saudi refusal to mediate in Lebanon crisis

Turkish FM comments on Saudi refusal to mediate in Lebanon crisis

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has commented on negotiations over the Lebanese government crisis, which he held in Beirut, Today's Zaman reported.

"Compared to yesterday [Tuesday], there are positive developments. At least none of the parties have categorically rejected our efforts. That is why we found the chance to go into the details of the process. This is important," Davutoglu told reporters following his meetings. "If any of the parties had insisted on maintaining their position, which is what happened on Sunday, then making progress would have been difficult," he said.

The Turkish minister praised efforts by Saudi Arabia and Syria, which failed to forge a deal to curb political tensions in Lebanon, while underlining that Qatar and Turkey have been "in supportive efforts" to those already exerted by Saudi Arabia and Syria.

"This is not an alternative or parallel initiative. We hope that if progress is made, Saudi Arabia will play the constructive role that it has always played," Davutoglu said, reminding that Saudi Arabia on Wednesday announced it had abandoned efforts to mediate in Lebanon's political crisis. Davutoglu also noted that Turkey and Qatar have been "informing" Saudi Arabia of their efforts, in addition to "consulting."

Davutoglu, meanwhile, reiterated that a solution should come from within the region and urged regional actors to support the progress made by Lebanese actors within the country.

"An international meeting will be meaningful only after such regional support is provided. Holding an international meeting without building the necessary infrastructure will not yield the desired outcome," Davutoglu said, adding that following the establishment of internal grounds in Lebanon, as well as regional grounds, contact with UN Security Council members should also be maintained.

A visit to Turkey by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, whose country is a key permanent member of the UN Security Council, which was scheduled to kick off later on Wednesday, will provide an opportunity for talks on the Lebanon issue, Davutoglu said.

Davutoglu, a "cautious optimist" in finding a solution to the crisis in Lebanon, met with Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah Tuesday night as part of joint efforts by Turkey and Qatar to solve the crisis in Lebanon.  

The meeting took place in a secret venue near Beirut, as Nasrallah's life is under threat by many powers, including Israel. The meeting with Nasrallah followed the nearly four-hour-long talks with caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri earlier on Tuesday evening.

Davutoglu and his Qatari counterpart, Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani, arrived in Beirut on Tuesday afternoon a few hours after Hezbollah forces took to the streets briefly, flexing its muscles in protest of the indictment of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL), which was established under the UN Security Council auspices to investigate the 2005 assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. It is expected that the indictment will accuse some Hezbollah members of assassination.

Saad Hariri's government collapsed last Wednesday when Hezbollah and its allies withdrew, anticipating being indicted for the 2005 assassination.

During the meeting with Nasrallah, which lasted almost three hours, the Qatari and Turkish ministers underlined that stability in Lebanon will have positive repercussions for peace in the region, a Turkish Foreign Ministry source said, adding, "We also underlined that the process should continue in a peaceful manner."

Another subject stressed by the visiting ministers was the prevention of the spirit of national unity. The same source added that they exchanged views on the STL but did not elaborate on the subject.

On the ground in Beirut, most of the politicians indicate the lack of a spirit of national unity. Hariri's block underlined that the STL is a red line and that Hariri is stuck in his stance.

Davutoglu and al-Thani held talks with President Michel Suleiman and Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri on Tuesday, yet there were no statements after these meetings. However, according to Lebanese newspaper An-Nahar, Berri said he has informed the visiting ministers that the majority March 14 coalition (Hariri's block) "missed a golden opportunity -- a guarantee out of this crisis."

While speaking with a small group of journalists on board a plane to Beirut on Tuesday, Davutoglu said that a solution that takes the realities of both sides into account should be supported and no group should be excluded from the process.

However, a powerful figure in Hariri's block, Antonie Zahra from the Lebanese Forces party, said the March 8 coalition (Hezbollah-led opposition) should refrain from participating in the upcoming government if Hariri gains a parliamentary majority and is again nominated as prime minister.

While speaking to Turkish journalists prior to his meetings, Davutoglu said that since Hariri's block gets most of the votes, a government established by him would be healthier, in principle. But if there is consensus on another candidate for prime minister within the block, that is up to them to decide, he added.

The two leaders were expected to meet with Druze leader Walid Jumblatt on Wednesday, whose block's decision for the next prime minister will be very important due to the composition of parliament.

Cargo, passenger traffic via Turkish Sabiha Gokcen Airport slumps amid pandemic
Cargo, passenger traffic via Turkish Sabiha Gokcen Airport slumps amid pandemic
Cargo transportation at Turkish Antalya airport reduces
Cargo transportation at Turkish Antalya airport reduces
Tender for maintenance of elevators, escalators launched in Turkey
Tender for maintenance of elevators, escalators launched in Turkey
Loading Bars
Microsoft Azerbaijan to support all initiatives in liberated territories of Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan shows footage of Kalbajar's Vang village (VIDEO)
Police fire tear gas at Paris protest against police violence
Electricity imports growing in Georgia
Cargo, passenger traffic via Turkish Sabiha Gokcen Airport slumps amid pandemic
Uzbek-Korean JSC Uz-Dong Won Co. announces tender for steel pipes supply
Cargo transportation at Turkish Antalya airport reduces
Austria records nearly 1,000 COVID-19 deaths over past 10 days
State Employment Agency of Azerbaijan opens tender on supporting start-up projects
Details of Iran’s exports to Iraq declared
Azerbaijan reports 4,212 new COVID-19 cases, 1,760 recoveries
Four citizens dead as result of mine exploding in Fuzuli - Azerbaijani Prosecutor General's Office
Kazakhstan's export volumes to China surge despite COVID-19
Assistant to Azerbaijan's president, diplomats, Garabagh FC representatives visit Aghdam Mosque (PHOTO)
Turkmenistan committed to promoting socio-economic development of Afghanistan
Georgian oil companies seek to avoid price increases
Tender for maintenance of elevators, escalators launched in Turkey
Azerbaijan's ten-month output of oil products declines
Turkey's export of grain and legumes to Turkmenistan up
Turkmenistan, Belarus discuss program of cooperation
Iran reveals its COVID-19 data for November 28
Azerbaijani president's assistant, diplomatic corps reps arrive at liberated Aghdam city
Rural digitalization project successfully underway in Kazakhstan
Missile fired to Tartar by Armenia delivered to local museum - president's assistant (VIDEO)
Number of enterprises put into operation in Iran's Ardabil Province up
Water problems center to be created in Uzbekistan’s Khorezm region
Khazar Consortium opens tender for purchase of lubricating oil
Azerbaijan’s Baku Telephone Communications opens tender
Georgia sees increase in COVID-19 cases
Number of shells fired at Tartar district by Armenian Armed Forces revealed
German minister says partial lockdown could last until Spring 2021
Kazakhstan doubles export to Afghanistan
Price of apartments in Iran’s Tehran rising
Autumn grain sowing carried out on large area of land in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan’s Baku Metro to buy inert materials through tender
Weekly review of Azerbaijani currency market
Azerbaijani president's assistant, diplomatic missions visiting Tartar (PHOTO)
Turkish soldiers to soon begin their missions in Azerbaijan - Turkey’s VP
Georgian Basisbank launches service for purchase of government securities
Azerbaijan shows footage of Kalbajar's Istisu village (VIDEO)
Uzbekistan reveals its COVID-19 data for November 28
Turkey issues 10M2020 data on cargo, passenger traffic in Adnan Menderes Airport
Assistant to Azerbaijani president, Karabakh football club to visit Tartar, Aghdam cities
Azerbaijani oil prices reaching $49 per barrel
Tesla could widen release of 'self-driving' software in two weeks
Iranian currency rates for November 28
Kazakhstan’s Intergas Central Asia opens tender for equipment modernization
Turkish municipality to rent vehicles via tender
Turkmenistan, EU discuss prospects for developing bilateral contacts
Iran seeks to cooperate in auto sector with foreign countries
Azerbaijani flag raised in liberated Kalbajar city after 27 years (VIDEO)
OPEC+ likely to roll over its current production cut at least until end-March 2021
Brazil's COVID-19 death toll nears 172,000
826 new coronavirus cases in 24 hrs, total at 130,039
Georgian Poti FIZ plans to implement production of high-tech electrical devices in 2021
Chinese mainland reports 6 new imported COVID-19 cases
British, Irish prime ministers discuss EU trade negotiations
Kazakhstan increases exports to Georgia multifold despite COVID-19
France reports 957 new COVID-19 deaths, hospitalizations down
76 more coronavirus patients die in Moscow in past day
OPEC+ monitoring committee postpones meeting on oil production cuts deal in 2021 to Sunday
Brexit goes down to the wire: EU and UK say big differences remain
Iran expected to reduce potato production
Azerbaijan national team won silver and bronze medals at 36th European Championship in Ukraine
Diesel fuel production down in Azerbaijan
Кazakhstan Electricity Grid Operating Company opens tender to buy batteries
Export of grain and legumes by Turkey to Iran down
Turkey registers nearly 30,000 new coronavirus cases as recoveries surpass 390,000
Kazakhstan has high hopes for homegrown COVID-19 vaccine - Minister
Georgia expect stabilization of pandemic with the expansion of restrictions
Iraq reports 2,545 new COVID-19 cases, 547,215 in total
Resolution adopted by French Senate is gross violation of int'l law - Honorary Member of French Parliament
Erdoğan urges public caution against COVID-19 in Turkey amid violations
76 Iranian professors among world top 2% scientists
Monetary policy in Georgia remains tightest among CIS - Renaissance Capital
Representatives of Kyrgyzstan take part in XVIII meeting of CSTO ICMEC
Britain records 16,022 new coronavirus cases, 521 new deaths
Azerbaijani gymnasts reach finals of 36th European Championship in Rhythmic Gymnastics in Ukraine
Turkish political parties condemn French Senate’s resolution on Karabakh
World Maritime University, Georgia aim to develop maritime education, capacity-building activities
Georgia makes giant strides in transposition of energy efficiency acquis
Cash receipts from Azerbaijan to Georgia increases
Number of debit cards in Azerbaijan increases
Uzbekistan increases raisins export to Netherlands
Georgia to subsidize wheat flour price
IAEA to implement multiple projects in Georgia
Uzbekistan, Hungary consider establishing Uzbek-Hungarian Business Council
Uzbekistan confirms repayment schedules on ADB loan for solid waste cleaning
Percentage of problem loans in Azerbaijan down
Eni Turkmenistan Ltd opens tender for vehicles provision
Tree-planting campaign continues in Azerbaijan's Gubadli (PHOTO)
Azerbaijan raises commercial gas production
COVID-related quarantine may be strengthened in Kazakhstan in December
German Bundestag welcoming cessation of hostilities in Karabakh for sustainable peace
Spain names main Turkmen sectors of its interest
Iran to follow FATF-related bills
French Development Agency puts emphasis on increasing solar and wind capacity integration in Georgia
Putin to hold annual press conference via video link on December 17
Share of Austria in total import of Azerbaijan increases
Kazakhstan, Canada discuss prospects for agriculture co-op
All news