“Turkey has always been a key regional player, and started raising its regional profile well before the Arab Spring, thanks to positive stands and timely policies,” King Abdullah said in an extensive interview with the Turkish Policy Quarterly academic journal published Saturday, assessing how geopolitical balances have shifted since the start of the uprisings in the Mideast.
Calling Syria the main question mark at the moment, King Abdullah said, "The Syrian crisis is placing new burdens and responsibilities on the neighbors, namely both Turkey and Jordan."
King Abdullah also said that the people of Arab Spring countries are more concerned that the values of moderation, respect for liberties and pluralism be upheld than they are with supporting any particular political party. “The Arab Spring is a call for dignity, justice and freedom. It is a call for change directed to all forces in the old regimes, whether in government or at the opposition,” he said.
Commenting on whether Turkey and Jordan together could have been able to more effectively direct regional developments, King Abdullah simply noted he was pleased with the current level of cooperation between Turkey and Jordan.
Remarking on Turkish-Israeli relations and the persisting Israel-Palestine conflict, King Abdullah said that the unrest in the Arab world has increased Israel's isolation in the region. “And a position of strength is not where they [Israel] are today, reportedly breaking ranks with the US on Iran, having damaged their relations with Turkey, and facing growing popular resentment and increasing isolation from their Arab neighbors, including the very moderate ones,” he said.