Saudi Arabia has said that a Turkish military base would not be welcome on kingdom’s soil after Ankara offers to build such a facility.
“The kingdom cannot allow Turkey to set up a military base on its territory,” said a statement released by SPA state news agency on Saturday.
The statement, which quoted an unnamed Riyadh official, added that Saudi Arabia “does not need such thing,” while adding that the kingdom’s military capabilities were “at the best standards.”
He added that Saudi armed forces were also stationed at Turkey’s Incirlik base.
The announcement was made in response to remarks made by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who said he had offered to build a base in Saudi Arabia “with the same idea” as Turkey’s military base in Qatar.
“I made the same offer to King Salman… and said that if it’s appropriate we could also establish a base in Saudi Arabia. They said they would look into it but since that day nothing more came,” Erdogan said during an interview aired by Portuguese television earlier in the week.
In early June, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) broke off relations with Doha and suspended all land, air and sea traffic with the monarchy. In their apparent bid to secure US support and that of Israel, the four countries cited Qatar’s links with the Palestinian resistance movement of Hamas and accused it of supporting terrorism. Qatar has denied the allegations, calling them unfounded.
Just two day after that, the Turkish parliament approved the deployment of troops to the base in Qatar.