Tension escalated between Ankara and Abu Dhabi

The United Arab Emirates on Saturday called on Turkey to stop interfering in Arab affairs and abandon “colonial delusions” and “logic of the high door,” after statements by the Turkish Minister of Defense on “harmful actions” committed by the UAE in Libya and vowing to Abu Dhabi Accountability.

The Turkish Minister of Defense, Hulusi Akar, said in an interview with the Qatari channel, al Jazeera, that “Abu Dhabi committed harmful actions in Libya and Syria,” promising them to say, “We will hold them accountable in the appropriate place and time”.

“Abu Dhabi must be asked what is the motive for this hostility, these bad intentions, this jealousy,” Akar said, according to a transcript of the interview published by the Turkish Defense Ministry in Turkish language.

In response to these statements, Emirati Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said on Twitter, “The logic of the High Gate and the Supreme State and its mandates is replaced by the historical archive. 

Relationships are not managed with threats and intrusions, and there is no place for colonial illusions.

Gargash considered that “the provocative statement of the Turkish Minister of Defense is a new fall in his country’s diplomacy,” noting that “it is more appropriate for Turkey to stop its interference in Arab affairs”.

Akar’s comments came in an atmosphere of escalating tension between the countries involved in the conflict in Libya between the recognized government of the United Nations based in Tripoli, and Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, who controls the Libyan East and a part of the south of the country.

Turkey militarily supports Tripoli government, while Haftar has the support of Egypt, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Russia.

The conflict in Libya has exacerbated the tension between Ankara and Abu Dhabi, whose relations have deteriorated in recent years against the background of regional influence and Turkey’s support for Qatar in the conflict between Doha and Saudi Arabia, Abu Dhabi, Manama and Cairo.

Turkey avoids direct criticism of Saudi Arabia, but it does not hesitate to criticize the UAE.

In 2018, Turkey named the neighborhood where the Emirati embassy in Ankara was called, “Fakhr al Din Pasha Alley”, after the Ottoman ruler, whom the UAE accuses of committing crimes against Medina residents.