Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is in Egypt as part of a four-day regional tour that will include Libya and Tunisia.
But the trip does not include the Gaza strip. In Istanbul on Monday, Erdogan slammed Israel’s actions over the Gaza embargo and last year’s flotilla raid that killed nine Turks.
“A visit to Gaza is not planned at the moment,” he said, “but frankly I’m yearning for such a visit. I really would like to visit Gaza as soon as possible.”
Erdogan is expected to address the Cairo-based Arab League while in Egypt, following EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton’s meeting with the League on Monday along with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
Erdogan’s tour is being seen as a bid by Turkey to expand its influence in the region. He is due to visit Tunisia on Wednesday and Libya on Thursday.