Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Recep Tayyip ErdoganReuters

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Tuesday that his country will continue to back the “Palestinian cause” and support the prosperity of Palestinian Arabs, the Xinhua news agency reported.

"We continue to support the Palestinian cause in the strongest way possible. We are deeply concerned about the violence of illegal settlers," Erdogan was quoted as having said at a joint press conference with visiting Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas in Ankara.

Establishing an independent Palestinian state with eastern Jerusalem as its capital within the pre-1967 borders based on UN parameters is essential for the peace and stability of the entire region, Erdogan added.

The Turkish president stressed that the international community, especially the UN, should be engaged in the “Palestinian issue”.

Erdogan added that Ankara would not tolerate any acts attempting to change the historical status quo of holy places, particularly the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

While Israel and Turkey formally announced last year that they would normalize relations by returning the ambassadors and consuls, Erdogan has long voiced his support for Palestinian Arabs.

Erdogan once stated that his country will oppose anyone who supports Israel and that Turkey will continue to promote the Palestinian cause regardless of efforts to undermine it by supporters of the Israeli regime.

After Israel and Turkey announced reconciliation efforts last year, Erdogan said those efforts will in no way diminish Turkey’s support for the “Palestinian cause.

“The steps taken in our relations with Israel will in no way reduce our support for the Palestinian cause,” Erdogan said. “On the contrary, our Palestinian brothers also express that these steps will contribute to a solution to the Palestinian issue and improve the situation of the Palestinian people.”