The Saudi ambassador to Ankara, Walid bin Abdulkarim al-Khurrajji, speaking at a reception held in Ankara on Wednesday, said that Turkey and Saudi Arabia have always had close bilateral ties and strategic partnerships, stressing that relations between the two countries have developed significantly in terms of political and economic issues as well as security. "There has always been close dialogue between Turkey and Saudi Arabia," the ambassador said, adding that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's visits to Riyadh have further boosted relations.
The Saudi envoy spoke at a reception to celebrate the 87th Saudi National Day, which Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ, Development Minister Lütfi Elvan, Finance Minister Naci Ağbal, Deputy Foreign Minister Ahmet Yıldız, Justice and Development Party (AK Party) Deputy Chairman Mehdi Eker, Presidency of Religious Affairs President Ali Erbaş, former Interior Minister Abdülkadir Aksu and former Energy Minister Taner Yıldız also attended along with ambassadors, diplomats and members of the press. Khurrajji said that the newly formed Turkish-Saudi Coordination Council will further enhance relations between Riyadh and Ankara and that he expects the agreements and memorandums of understanding signed between the two countries to be realized as soon as possible. Calling Saudi Arabia one of the developed countries that contribute to world stability and peace, he said: "Today, we are reaping the fruits of our national and governmental efforts," adding that Saudi Arabia has launched projects to expand two old mosques to provide more convenience for visitors. The reception in Ankara began with the singing of the national anthems of Turkey and Saudi Arabia. Bozdağ and Khuraiji cut the cake at the event, which ended following a Saudi sword dance show and formal dinner.