Turkish delegation due in Egypt in normalization push

A Turkish diplomatic delegation headed by Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Önal will pay a two-day visit to Egypt on May 5 and 6, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said. This will be the first ever high-level visit from Turkey to Egypt since the Egyptian army toppled Mohamed Morsi, a Muslim Brotherhood president close to Ankara, in 2013.

Turkey's Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Önal (L) is set to meet with Egyptian counterpart Hamdi Sanad Loza in Cairo on May 5.

Duvar English - Anadolu Agency 

A delegation of senior Turkish officials will pay a two-day visit to Egypt starting on May 5, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Political consultations between the countries will be held under the chairmanship of Turkish Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Önal and Egyptian Deputy Foreign Minister Hamdi Sanad Loza on May 5-6 in Cairo, the ministry said.

“These exploratory discussions will focus on necessary steps that may lead towards the normalization of relations between the two countries bilaterally and in the regional context,” the statement read. 

This will be the first ever high-level visit from Turkey to Egypt since the Egyptian army toppled a democratically elected Muslim Brotherhood president close to Turkey in 2013 in what Ankara said was a military coup. 

The Egyptian Foreign Ministry also released a statement with regards to the Turkish delegation's visit, saying that they will discuss steps required for normalization and cooperation over regional topics.

On April 15, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu announced in a live broadcast that it was agreed that the channel first opened between Turkish and Egyptian intelligence would continue through the foreign ministries.

Çavuşoğlu said Egypt had invited the Turkish side for the visit in early May, which is to be held at the deputy foreign minister-level.

After the inter-delegations meeting, Çavuşoğlu said he could meet his Egyptian counterpart as well.

Turkey and Egypt have been at odds in recent years over their conflicting positions on the Muslim Brotherhood, the war in Libya, and maritime borders in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Despite the political frictions, Ankara says Cairo remains its biggest African trade partner, with the value of trade standing at $4.86 billion last year, only marginally down from 2012, the year before Turkey's ally Mohamed Mursi was toppled.