Report: US, Turkey discuss Qatar row, Syria on phone call


ANKARA, June 11 (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu discussed developments in Syria and in the row between Qatar and its fellow Arab states on a phone call late on Saturday, Turkish foreign ministry sources said.

The call, held at Tillerson's request, came after Tillerson on Friday urged Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states to ease their blockade of Qatar, saying it was causing unintended humanitarian consequences and affecting the U.S.-led fight against Islamic State.

No further details of the call were immediately available.

Referring to Tillerson's comments on the blockade, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said in a speech at a Ramadan fast-breaking dinner in Istanbul on Friday: "I say it should be lifted completely."

RELATED: Countries that cut ties with Qatar

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Countries that cut ties with Qatar
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Countries that cut ties with Qatar

Saudi Arabia

In this photo, OPEC President, Saudi Arabia's Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih, and OPEC Secretary General Mohammad Barkindo talk to journalists before the beginning of a meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in Vienna, Austria, May 25, 2017. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger

Egypt

In this photo, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (R) meets with the Head of the National Iraqi Alliance, Ammar Al-Hakim at the Ittihadiya presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt April 18, 2017 in this handout picture courtesy of the Egyptian Presidency. Picture taken April 18, 2017. The Egyptian Presidency/Handout

United Arab Emirates

In this photo, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Armed Forces Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahayan, center, attends the Arab Islamic American Summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia May 21, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Bahrain

In this photo, U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, May 21, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Maldives

In this photo, Maldives former president Mohamed Nasheed speaks during an interview with Reuters in Colombo, Sri Lanka March 29, 2017. REUTERS/Dinuka Liyanawatte

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Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt severed relations with Qatar on Monday, accusing it of supporting Islamist militants and their adversary Iran - allegations Qatar says are baseless. Several countries followed suit.

Erdogan vowed to keep supporting Qatar after his rapid approval of legislation on deploying Turkish troops there. On Saturday, he told Bahrain's foreign minister that the dispute should be resolved by the end of the holy month of Ramadan.

Erdogan on Thursday also approved an accord between Turkey and Qatar on military training cooperation. Both bills were drawn up before the dispute between Qatar and others erupted. Turkey has also pledged to provide food and water supplies to Qatar.

SEE ALSO: Russia warns US not to strike Syrian pro-government forces again

Turkey has maintained good relations with Qatar as well as several of its Gulf Arab neighbors. Turkey and Qatar have both provided support for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and backed rebels fighting to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Turkey and fellow NATO member the United States have also been at loggerheads regarding U.S. support the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia in the fight against Islamic State in Syria. Turkey views the YPG as an extension of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which has waged a three-decade-long insurgency on its soil.

The United States said last week it had started supplying arms to the YPG for an assault on the Syrian town of Raqqa, deepening Turkey's anger. The YPG's role in the Raqqa campaign has strained ties between the United States and Turkey, which fears growing Kurdish ascendancy along its border. (Reporting by Tulay Karadeniz; writing by Tuvan Gumrukcu; editing by Jason Neely)

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Amar Hussein, 22, an Islamic State member listens to a counter-terrorism agent in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Ghaffar Abdel Rahman, 31, an Islamic State member speaks during his meeting with Reuters journalists in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Amar Hussein, 22, an Islamic State member, has his cuff removed by a counter-terrorism agent inside his prison cell in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Ghaffar Abdel Rahman, 31, an Islamic State member, speaks during his meeting with Reuters journalists in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017.REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Islamic religious praises are pictured on the wall of a prison cell of Amar Hussein, 22, an Islamic State member, in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Amar Hussein, 22, an Islamic State member look out from a prison cell in Sulaimaniya , Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017.REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Amar Hussein, 22, an Islamic State member, has his cuff removed by a counter-terrorism agent inside his prison cell in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Amar Hussein, 22, an Islamic State member, stands as his head is covered with a black hood while he waits to be escorted to his cell in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Amar Hussein, 22, an Islamic State member, sits during an interview with Reuters journalists in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Ghaffar Abdel Rahman, 31, an Islamic State member, stands at an interrogation room in Sulaimaniya , Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Amar Hussein, 22, an Islamic State member sits at his prison cell in Sulaimaniya , Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017.REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
The hand of Ghaffar Abdel Rahman, 31, an Islamic State member, is seen from a cell in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017.R EUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Ghaffar Abdel Rahman, 31, an Islamic State member, is escorted by a counter-terrorism agent as his head is covered with a black hood in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Ghaffar Abdel Rahman, 31, an Islamic State member, sits at his prison cell in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Ghaffar Abdel Rahman, 31, an Islamic State member, looks out from a prison cell in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Ghaffar Abdel Rahman, 31, an Islamic State member, sits at his prison cell in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017.REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
Ghaffar Abdel Rahman, 31, an Islamic State member, is escorted by a counter-terrorism agent as his head is covered with a black hood in Sulaimaniya, Iraq February 15, 2017. Picture taken February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra
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