Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has spoken to Saudi Arabia's King Salman bin Abdulaziz and newly installed crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, as he presses on with his efforts to mediate talks to resolve the Qatar crisis.
The tiny energy-rich Emirate of Qatar plunged into diplomatic chaos when major Riyadh-led Arab powers launched a campaign to isolate the Gulf state. Following the states' announcement they were severing ties with Doha, uncertainty gripped the region. Ankara, which has a military base in Qatar hosting about 90 Turkish troops, has offered strong support to Doha following the diplomatic showdown.
Unnamed sources told multiple media outlets that both the Turkish leader and Saudi authorities agreed that tensions created by the worst diplomatic crisis in the Middle East in nearly a decade must ease.
Erdogan and the Saudi crown prince agreed "to increase the efforts to end the tension in the axis of Qatar" as they expressed hopes to improve bilateral relations. Erdogan is also scheduled to have a face-to-face meeting with King Salman in early July when they visit Hamburg, Germany, for a G20 summit.
Erdogan's phone call comes in the wake of a major shake-up in the Saudi royal family, which saw the crown prince Muhammad bin Nayef, King Salman's nephew, being deposed and replaced by the ambitious young prince Mohammed bin Salman. Erdogan congratulated the new prince on his elevation.