President Erdoğan holds surprise meeting with his predecessor
CİHAN photoPresident Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has held a surprise meeting with his predecessor and long-time comrade, former President Abdullah Gül.
Erdoğan reportedly hosted Gül at a dinner on Feb. 9. The almost three-hour long meeting took place at the state guesthouse in the presidential palace compound. The two decided to gather when Erdoğan called Gül to extend his good wishes following a medical operation the latter had undergone, sources said. The meeting was arranged for Feb. 9 to take advantage of an overlap in the two leaders’ agendas.
The Syrian conflict and Turkish security forces’ ongoing operations against militants of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) reportedly dominated the agenda of the dinner. It was alleged a recent polemic between Erdoğan and former Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç, a founding member of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and long-time friend of both Erdoğan and Gül, also came on the agenda.
“While the country has been passing through a troubled period, we need to focus on getting the country out of these difficulties instead of wasting our energy on internal discussions,” Gül reportedly said during the dinner.