- Turkish Pres. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Iran's Pres. Ebrahim Raisi, and Pakistani Prime Minister Anwaar ul Haq Kakar traveled to Uzbekistan on Thursday for the regional Economic Cooperation Organisation (ECO) summit, while Russia's Vladimir Putin met with his Kazakh counterpart Kassym-Jomart Tokayev in Astana.1
- Erdoğan and Raisi spoke against Israel and the West at the summit in Tashkent, criticizing them over the Israel-Hamas war and highlighting their alleged hypocrisy and crimes in Gaza. The Turkish leader further urged Muslim countries to defend the Palestinian cause.2
- Though the ECO agenda was expected to focus on trade, humanitarian cooperation, and transport in the landlocked region that looks to gain access to the sea via Pakistan, Iran and Turkey brought the conflict in Gaza to the table.3
- This comes as they had reportedly talked separately on the sidelines of the summit about the humanitarian crisis stemming from Israeli attacks on Gaza, steps to be taken for a solution, as well as Turkish-Iranian relations and regional issues.4
- Meanwhile, in Kazakhstan, Putin and Tokayev held talks and signed a joint statement to mark the 10th anniversary of their Treaty on Good-neighborly Relations and Alliance in the 21st Century. The Kremlin denied that the issue of Kazakh-French relations was on the agenda.5
- Moscow has seen its clout in Central Asia decline despite long-established political and security ties since the outbreak of the Ukraine war, with Turkey and France ramping up their diplomatic efforts to expand their influence. China has also made economic advances in the region with its Belt and Road initiative.6
- Pro-establishment narrative, as provided by New York Post. The Muslim world should be very cautious before it decides to partner with Russia and China instead of its current Western allies. Russia has a history of killing and torturing so-called suspected Islamic terrorists since at least the Chechen wars of the 1990s, and China's treatment of the Muslim Uyghurs in the Xinjiang province is despicable. Just because these two dictatorships haven't condemned Hamas doesn't mean they're looking to accept Islam in their respective societies.
- Establishment-critical narrative, as provided by Daily sabah. The West has no leg to stand on concerning how or with whom the Muslim world conducts its business. The global rules-based order created in 1945 was founded by countries who wanted to prevent human rights abuses — but those countries, headed by the US, are now helping fund Israel's assault on the Palestinian people. A shift in global power structure is on the horizon, and non-Western countries will have a bigger seat at the table.