Iranian FM in Ankara amid Qatar row

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Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif speaks to media upon his arrival at the hotel during his visit for regional issues and bilateral ties with Turkish officials, in Ankara, Turkey on June 7, 2017. Emin Sansar / Anadolu Agency

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif arrived in Ankara on Wednesday at a time when a dispute between Gulf powers and Qatar is escalating.

Zarif will reportedly discuss bilateral and regional matters with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu. Efforts to defuse the Qatar crisis — sparked on Monday when the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and others severed diplomatic ties with it over alleged support for Islamist groups and Iran — have shown no immediate signs of success.

Erdoğan, who has been pushing to resolve the crisis, has said that isolating Qatar, including by the use of sanctions, would not resolve the problem.

“It will not contribute to solving any problem to try and isolate Qatar in this way, which we know for sure has fought very effectively against terrorist groups,” he said following a fast-breaking dinner for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan on Tuesday.

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