Erdoğan’s drift towards Iran accelerating after Trump-brokered Middle East deals - analysis

Turkey has been drifting away from the United States and towards Iran and that trend has accelerated since the United States brokered normalisation agreements between Israel and several Gulf states, the Washington Examiner said.

“Upon rejection of the document of surrender, which was tried to be imposed on Palestine under the name of ‘Deal of the Century’, Israel this time accelerated its attempts to ‘have the inside track’ with the help of its collaborators,” Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said in a pre-recorded speech on Tuesday to the United Nations General Assembly, taking aim at U.S. President Donald Trump's recent peace efforts in the Middle East.

On Jan. 29, Trump revealed his long-awaited plan, which promised to keep Jerusalem as Israel's undivided capital and recognise Israeli sovereignty over West Bank settlements. In response, Erdoğan declared that Turkey would not allow Trump to implement the blueprint, saying that it legitimised Israeli occupation under U.S. auspices.

But the intensity of Erdoğan’s aversion to Trump’s policies in the Middle East has spurred Turkey, a NATO ally of the United States, into closer alignment with Iran and Hamas, Joel Gehrke, the Washington Examiner’s foreign affairs reporter, said in an analysis on Tuesday.

Some of the strongest condemnations of the U.S.-brokered agreements this summer to establish full diplomatic relations between Israel and the Arab countries, including the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain, came from Turkey and Iran, Gehrke said. 

Meanwhile, Erdoğan has been strengthening ties with Hamas by holding meetings with top-ranking Hamas members and providing support to the group, prompting several U.S. officials to raise concerns about the relationship, Gehrke said. Hamas is recognised as a terrorist organisation by the United States and the European Union.

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