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Russian, Turkish diplomats discuss situation in Egypt and Syria

July 17, 2013, 19:40 UTC+3
Earlier in the day, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Levent Gumrukcu called for the speediest restoration of democracy in Egypt
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Photo EPA/ITAR-TASS

Photo EPA/ITAR-TASS

MOSCOW, July 17 (Itar-Tass) - The Russian president’s special representative for the Middle East and Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov met with Turkish Ambassador in Moscow Aydin Sezgin on Wednesday, July 17, at the latter’s request.

The diplomats discussed pressing Middle East issues with a focus on the developments in Egypt and Syria, the Foreign Ministry said.

Earlier in the day, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Levent Gumrukcu called for the speediest restoration of democracy in Egypt.

“Our position on what happened in Egypt is open and we have communicated and are communicating it to our foreign partners. Elected President Mohamed Morsi was removed in an undemocratic manner,” he said.

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said Ankara continues to consider Morsi a legitimate president of Egypt. His statement angered Egypt’s present authorities that accused Turkey of an attempt to interfere in the internal affairs of their country.

However, Gumrukcu stressed that one should not try to find an attempt at such interference in the Turkish leaders’ statements. “We have no such intentions. Egypt was and remains an important partner for us. We have long-standing and strong relations with that country and we express concern about the developments there,” he said.

He also cautioned against attempts to define or label Ankara’s relations with the present leadership of Egypt. “Our new ambassador is in Cairo. He is working and contacting all representatives of political and public forces and sides. But our position has not changed: the legitimately elected president was removed from office by efforts that are at odds with democratic principles. And we want Egypt to return to democracy urgently,” the spokesman said.

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