French sources say disagreements over issues such as the eastern Mediterranean must be ironed out before Macron accepts Erdogan’s invitation.

French President Emmanuel Macron is not expected to visit Turkey despite an open invitation from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan earlier this year, indicating that the differences between countries are still too big to bridge.

Turkey and France have had a rocky relationship over the past few years, squabbling over issues such as the Eastern Mediterranean and Syria. The two leaders even exchanged personal insults, with Erdogan once calling Macron “brain dead”. But a period of non-engagement ended last year when they exchanged letters to mend broken ties.

In October, Erdogan said he met Macron on the sidelines of the French-led European Political Community summit and invited him for a visit. “He asked me if he could come after the G-20 summit in Indonesia in [November] and I told him to bring his wife, who gets on well with mine,” Erdogan told Reuters. ‘era.

French sources familiar with the talks told a group of reporters that Macron’s trip to Ankara was unlikely. The sources said that the two countries are still in negotiations to reach a conclusion on various disagreements and that the visit would be in vain without their resolution.

The upcoming Turkish presidential elections, scheduled for June, are another factor. The sources said they would not want to have an official presidential visit too close to the election and risk impacting Turkish domestic politics.

In the eastern Mediterranean and the Aegean, Turkey and France are at odds over maritime borders and tensions between Ankara, Greece and Cyprus.

The sources claimed that Turkey has threatened the sovereignty of Greece and Cyprus, stoking tensions and alienating Ankara from the European Union.

The sources, who argue that a two-state solution in Cyprus is against United Nations parameters, said Erdogan’s call for an Eastern Mediterranean conference is still on the table. They said France would do whatever it takes to pursue common interests.

They also noted that Turkey’s proposal for a conference and dialogue is in line with French objectives, as long as tensions are not brought to the table.

France does not have a separate agenda on the issues and wants a solution within UN parameters, they added.

Earlier this month, Macron also proposed a regional summit on Turkish and Iranian military operations against Kurdish groups in Syria and Iraq, possibly to be held before the end of the year. The sources said the reunion is still being planned and is unlikely to meet until the end of the year.

France says economic and trade partnerships are two of the most important pillars of its relationship with Turkey.

The most recent example of this cooperation is the Turkey-France Joint Economics and Trade Commission (JETCO) protocol, signed in Paris on November 30, which aims to increase bilateral trade and investment.



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