Ahmet Davutoglu says he would be honored if Abdullah Gul returned to active politics in the AK Party.
Turkey’s Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Friday that he would be "proud" if former President Abdullah Gul returned to active politics in the ruling AK Party.
"Of course, the decision would be his, but there isn't even a need for an invitation for this," Davutoglu told reporters in New York, adding that Gul has always been a part of the party.
Davutoglu's remarks echoed recent comments by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who said earlier Friday that a possible decision by Gul to stand in the upcoming parliamentary elections would be good.
"Whenever he wishes, the doors of the AK Party is always open to him. In fact, even saying this is unnecessary," Davutoglu said. "Because one opens doors to a person who is outside. Threre is no need to say this for a person who is already inside."
Gul is among the founders of the ruling Justice and Development Party -- also known as AK Party -- along with Erdogan. He served as the 11th president of Turkey from 2007 to 2014.
Although differences exists on issues such as security versus freedoms, and the two have expressed different opinions regarding the Gezi Park anti-government protests in 2013, Gul and Erdogan have a long history of comradeship as the two leading figures in the Turkish political arena.
Rumors of discord between the two have been denied more than once by way of mutual gestures and common statements of agreement.