It seems that the Saudi crown prince and de facto ruler of the kingdom, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, is seeking reconciliation with Turkey at any cost to ease the pressure on him. After Joe Biden rose to power in America and promised him to open the notorious human rights file for the kingdom.
In this context and in what analysts considered a flirtation from Riyadh to Ankara, a Turkish designer was appointed to a senior position in Saudi Arabia.
The Saudi Fashion Authority, affiliated to the Ministry of Culture, announced the appointment of Turkish fashion designer “Burak شakmak” as its CEO.
Mr. Burak Chakmak appointed CEO of.
– Fashion Authority (@FashionMOC)
The authority said, in an official statement via its Twitter account, that Chakmak would be its CEO.
Among his most prominent tasks will be “setting a strategy for developing the fashion sector, licensing related activities, and encouraging financing and investment in this area.”
In addition to “supporting and empowering talents, professionals and entrepreneurs in the fashion industry, and providing training courses and professional programs.”
It is noteworthy that this matter would not have happened in the Kingdom except by direct order of Mohammed bin Salman. Especially in light of the campaign to boycott Turkish products. Adopted by the state, and the known dispute between the two countries since the Khashoggi crisis.
According to his CV, “Shakmak” has great experiences in the fashion industry and design, the last of which was his deanship of the College of Fashion. At Parsons School of Design “The New School” in New York since 2015.
Chakmak’s appointment is sparking controversy
And the appointment of the Turkish designer sparked widespread controversy in Saudi circles.
Activists expressed their dissatisfaction with the neglect of the national component in this position, and others saw the appointment of a Turkish citizen in a government job. “A provocation to the Saudi Prime Time Zone.”
On the other hand, others justified the decision of the Fashion Authority, saying that seeking help from Prime Time Zone with expertise in all fields is necessary and does not invite criticism.
And calls have been active in Saudi Arabia for months to boycott Turkish products, as well as calls to stop Saudi investment in Turkey, or to direct Saudi tourists to it.
Relations between Saudi Arabia and Turkey have been strained over several issues, most notably the killing of Jamal Khashoggi.
The campaign was launched last October
Since October 2020, a wide range of Saudi institutions and companies operating in the commercial sectors have announced. And various industrial. It joined the province of Turkish products.
This was considered the largest response of its kind to the campaign, which enjoys overt support by some officials and members of the ruling family. And semi-official media in the Kingdom.
Relations between Turkey and Saudi Arabia have been strained for years due to foreign policy issues, especially after the killing of the Saudi journalist. Jamal Khashoggi, on October 2, 2018, at the Kingdom’s Consulate in Istanbul.
Saudi Arabia ranks 15th in the list of the largest Turkish export markets, with sales led by carpets and textiles. Chemicals, grains, furniture and steel, $ 1.91 billion in the first eight months of 2020.
This represents a decrease of 17% compared to 2019, when this index reached $ 2.3 billion.
Details of the reconciliation negotiations between the two countries
In a related context, an informed source revealed that there is tension in the negotiations between Saudi system And Turkey, pointing out that the tension. It prevailed in the last stage after efforts to repair the deteriorating relations between the two parties.
The source said, according to the “Saudi WikiLeaks” website, that King Salman, with his son, Crown Prince Muhammad, were trying. Accelerate reconciliation negotiations with Turkey.
The source indicated that this is an attempt to end the file of the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the Kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul in 2018.
The source confirmed that bin Salman is trying to persuade Turkey to close this file in an attempt to calm the anger of US President Joe Biden.
Erdogan adheres to his conditions
He added that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in return, adheres to difficult conditions against the one responsible for the murder inside. Turkish territory, in reference to the Crown Prince.
The source confirmed that bin Salman is angry at Turkey’s stance and adherence to its principles, which prompted him to escalate the boycott campaign against Turkish products.
And Saudi sources previously said that the Kingdom is currently moving towards concluding reconciliation with Turkey, after progress has been made. In the file of the Gulf reconciliation.
The sources stated that King Salman ordered, during last January, the formation of a Saudi committee to handle the file of reconciliation with Turkey.
She indicated that a high-ranking Saudi delegation left Riyadh to visit Ankara and discussed strengthening relations with the two countries
According to the Turkish “Anadolu Agency”, it may seem that the Turkish-Saudi relations will not return to their previous state within a short period. Nevertheless, the developments that took place in recent months have formed a positive atmosphere between the two countries.
According to the agency, with the emphasis on the need for the governments of the two countries to take constructive steps during this stage, it should. Supporting these steps is to stop the Saudi government from pursuing further adventures. And giving priority to the “state mind” above all.
She added, “The escalation of tension in relations between the two countries with the launch of the dynamics of the” Arab Spring “phase, and the exacerbation of tension due to a number of developments that occurred during the last five years.
And she continued: “Undoubtedly, the main reasons for the tension in these relations are related to the approach taken by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Who rose to this position in 2017, two years after his father, King Salman bin Abdulaziz, took the throne in 2015. ”
And she continued: “The Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, followed policies to consolidate his authority and pursued adventurous policies by being dragged behind the UAE.”
And she indicated that it could provide for changing balances in the region and taking a number of diplomatic steps with Joe Biden seated. In the American presidency, opportunities for rapprochement between Turkey and Saudi Arabia again.
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