By Burak Dag
ANKARA (AA) - The Israeli president on Wednesday said he is pleased to have an open and sincere dialogue with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, as the two countries move to improve bilateral ties.
Speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, Isaac Herzog said: “I am very pleased that I have an open, frank dialogue with President Erdogan, which is leading in the right direction.”
He was responding to WEF President Borge Brende's question on normalization of Ankara-Tel Aviv relations, and his historic state visit to Turkiye in March.
"It is a very interesting, a well-thought of process, which President Erdogan and myself have started since my assuming office. One of its peaks was my historic state visit in Ankara and Istanbul in March."
Calling Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu’s historic visit to Israel as a "next phase" in bilateral relations, Herzog said: "Cavusoglu of Turkey visited Israel yesterday and today for what you would call action item visit."
Cavusoglu’s tour was the first visit by a Turkish foreign minister to Israel in nearly 15 years.
"The process with Turkey of course is not lullaby of Romeo and Juliet,” he said. “It is a convergence of interests. It is a process that it tested on the ground with many topics to be discussed."
On regional cooperation, he said: "Our vision is that we should be able to have dialogue with all our neighbors and friends in the Mediterranean, especially in the eastern Mediterranean," he said, adding that regional countries can work together on issues such as climate, clean water "for the well-being of humanity."
Noting that Turkish-Israeli relations had "ups and downs" in the past, and gave the example of the historic debate on Gaza between President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and then Israeli President Shimon Peres during a 2009 session at the forum.