Political and economic arrangements between Egypt and Turkey are consolidating
Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi visited Turkey, at the beginning of October, on the occasion of the Congress of the Justice and Development Party (AKP), which is currently the head of the Turkish Republic.
This short trip was very useful for the Egyptians. The President Morsi, in fact, signed an agreement on economic cooperation with the Turkish Prime Minister, Islamic and nationalist, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. This grant provided a loan of two billion dollars to Egypt. In addition, the relationship between the AKP and the Muslim Brotherhood has been strengthened.
There are many similarities between these two parties: both are the expression of Sunni Islam and both enjoy a large popular support. However, the choices made by AKP and by Muslim Brotherhood, once in government, are very different.
After the fall of Hosni Mubarak, in February 2011, the relations between the Muslims Brotherhood and Erdogan’s party, and therefore those two countries, have been strengthened.
In fact on March of the same year, Turkish President Abdullah Gül, become the first head of state to meet in Cairo the leaders of the main parties and the youth of Tahrir Square.
In addiction the Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu traveled to Egypt several times, and there are rumors about the economic support of the Muslim Brotherhood campaign, by the AKP.
This last two years Egypt and Turkey are more closed, also because the rupture of relations between Turkey and Israel.
Turkey, in fact, was the first Muslim Country to recognize Israel in 1949. Also, during these 50 years, the relations between the two countries are complicated. Turkey was influenced by the relations with the Arab countries of the Middle East.
Regarding the relationship with Turkey, Israel use in the ‘50s the “peripheral strategy”, namely an alliance with other non-Arab Countries in the region (such as Iran) and support for minorities in Arab Countries (such as the Maronite Christians in Lebanon and the Kurds in Iraq).
The secret agreement signed between Israel and Turkey in 1958 is the lowest point of relations between Egypt and Turkey. Things begin to improve until the second half of the ‘60s, when Turkey began a rapprochement with the Arab and Muslim.
The final rupture of relations between Israel and Turkey was caused by the Israeli attack on Turkish ship Mavi Marmara, part of a flotilla in May 2010 that wanted to stop the blockade of Gaza (which Israel imposed for a period of six years).
The rapprochement between Egypt and Turkey become a reality since Justice and Development Party come to power in Ankara, in 2002, and since the new Turkish foreign policy, called the “neo-Ottomanism”, is adopted. The neo-Ottomanism is the intent to defend Turkish national interests, and protect those of other Muslim peoples of the region, in spite of the interests of non-Muslims.
The connection between Egypt and Turkey grow also in the economic field: in January of 2011 was created to promote the end of economic cooperation in the Middle East, an area of free trade, which includes the two Countries, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon. Also a bilateral agreement is signed in the field of transport (which would transform Egypt into a hub for Turkish goods that travelling to Africa and to the Gulf Countries).
Finally, the Egyptian president proposed, on the occasion of his visit to Ankara, to delete entry visas between the two Countries and invited Turkish businessmen to invest safely in Egypt.