Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz concluded his state visit to Turkey today, the final leg of a four-nation tour that has taken him to Britain, Germany and Italy.
Before departing the country for Egypt, King Abdullah met with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan for talks that focused on the Middle East peace process, Lebanon, Iraq and bilateral relations.
Also today, King Abdullah, Prime Minister Erdogan and President Abdullah Gul oversaw the signing of a joint declaration of Saudi-Turkish cooperation. In the declaration, the two countries agreed to expand relations in a variety of fields, including trade, banking, political and cultural cooperation, security, and counterterrorism. The two countries also signed an agreement on the avoidance of dual taxation during the visit.
Yesterday, King Abdullah attended a state dinner held in his honor by President Gul. In remarks at the banquet, the King expressed the hope that his visit would boost relations between the two countries. He praised Turkey for its position on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, which both nations agree is a primary cause for unrest in the region, and called for a resolution to the conflict within the framework of the Arab Peace Initiative.