Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on his first official visit to the White House, met with his American counterpart Donald Trump, during which he declared that Trump’s victory has led to new aspirations in the Middle East.
“And once again in your presence, I would like to congratulate President Trump for the legendary triumph that he has garnered in the aftermath of the elections.” “We are determined to expand our relations, and I believe my current visit to the United States will mark a historical turn of tide.” / “Of course, President Trump’s recent election victory has led to the awakening of a new set of aspirations and expectations and hopes in our region,” said Erdogan.
President Donald Trump, who declared the Turkish peoples as friends and allies of the United States, emphasized his eagerness to work together with his Turkish counterpart in achieving peace and security to the Middle East and confronting shared threats.
“Taking YPG and PYD in the region, taking them into account– the region will never be accepted and it is going to be against a global agreement that we have reached,” added Erdogan.
Trump also referred to the conflict in Syria, where Turkey is supporting rebels against the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad, stressing that Washington supports any effort that seeks to reduce the violence in the war-torn country, with the aim of creating the conditions necessary to implement a peaceful resolution. The American President also noted that Washington supports Ankara in its fight against the Islamic State, as well as the internationally recognized terror group, the Kurdistan Workers Party, PKK, which has waged a decades long insurgency against Turkey, since 1984, with a demand for equal rights and Kurdish self-determination.
“It is a great pleasure to welcome President Erdogan for his first visit to the White House in years. The American and Turkish peoples have been friends and allies for many, many decades.” / “I look forward to working together with President Erdogan on achieving peace and security in the Middle East, on confronting the shared threats, and on working toward a future of dignity and safety for all of our people,” said Trump.
A decision, however, by President Donald Trump to arm the Kurdish militias operating in Syria, including the powerful YPG, which Washington views as helpful in the fight against the Islamic State, continues to trouble President Erdogan, who views the Syrian militia as an extension of the outlawed PKK. The Turkish President asserted in his joint press conference with his American counterpart, that the Kurdish militias in Syria, including the YPG and PYD, will never be accepted by Ankara, as arming these organizations would pose a major threat to Turkey in the future.
“We support Turkey in the first fight against Turkey and terror groups like ISIS and the PKK, and ensure they have no safe quarter, the terror groups. We also appreciate Turkey’s leadership in seeking an end to the horrific killing in Syria. The Syrian civil war shocks the conscience of the whole world. And all you have to do is look on the front page of the papers today and you’ll see exactly what we’re talking about. We also support any effort that can be used to reduce the violence in Syria and create the conditions for a peaceful resolution,” iterated Trump.
Sources familiar with the talks between the two leaders told TV7 that Erdogan urged Trump to reconsider his decision to arm the Kurdish militias, noting that if the United States would not change its position on the matter, Turkey would have to act for ‘its own security interest.’