Turkish and Israeli foreign ministers Mevlut Cavusoglu and Eli Cohen discussed bilateral relations by phone and agreed to improve them, the Turkish Foreign Ministry told Sputnik.
“Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu had a telephone conversation today (January 4) with new Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen. Minister Cavusoglu congratulated his counterpart on the new appointment,” the ministry said.
“Minister Cavusoglu reminded Cohen of Turkey’s sensitivity and expectations on the Palestinian issue, and in this context stressed that Ankara considers unacceptable the provocative actions by Israeli National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir in relation to Al-Aqsa Mosque,” it said.
Cavusoglu emphasized the importance Turkey attaches to protecting the status of Al-Aqsa Mosque, and told his counterpart that Ankara expects to avoid any provocative actions.
“During the meeting, the ministers also agreed to work together to improve bilateral relations,” the Foreign Ministry said.
On Tuesday, Gvir visited Temple Mount, where Al-Aqsa Mosque – one of Islam’s most revered sites – is located. The visit sparked condemnation from much of the Muslim world, including Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is committed to protecting the status quo of the Temple Mount, a member of his office reportedly said on Tuesday. The Temple Mount is revered as a holy site by all of the Abrahamic faiths.