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Biden to tell Erdogan US and Turkey must avoid crises

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Biden to tell Erdogan US and Turkey must avoid crises

| Top stories | abc News

President Joe Biden plans to tell Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at a Sunday morning meeting at the Group of 20 summit that the two countries must find ways to avoid crises between them

The two leaders also plan to discuss regional issues involving Syria and Libya, a senior US administration official said on Saturday. The official insisted on anonymity to discuss the upcoming conversation between Biden and Erdogan.

Turkey’s role as a NATO ally has come under intense scrutiny in recent weeks. Erdogan at a rally on October 23 said that 10 foreign ambassadors who called for the release of a jailed philanthropist should be declared persona non grata. The envoys, including representatives from the United States, France and Germany, had previously issued a statement aimed at resolving the case of Osman Kavala, a businessman and philanthropist imprisoned since 2017 when he was not convicted of a crime.

Erdogan did not follow up on the threat. But that reflected rising tensions with the United States.

“I honestly cannot say that there is a healthy process in Turkish-American relations,” Erdogan said in September, according to the state-run Anadolu news agency.

The two leaders did not meet for bilateral talks on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly. Since Biden became president, they have only met in June at a NATO summit where they discussed the possibility of Turkey securing and operating the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul. But those plans evaporated when the Taliban quickly took control of Afghanistan amid the departure of the US military.

The Turkish president said he was open to buying a second Russian missile system, despite controversy over his 2017 deal to acquire the Russian-made S-400 system.

In a September interview with CBS News, Erdogan said Turkey did not have the option of purchasing American-made Patriot missiles. He also said the United States did not deliver F-35 stealth planes despite a payment of $ 1.4 billion.

Turkey was kicked out of the F-35 program and defense officials were sanctioned after purchasing the Russian-made S-400 missile defense system. The United States strongly opposes the use of Russian systems in NATO and says it poses a threat to the F-35s. Turkey maintains that the S-400s could be used independently without being integrated into NATO systems and therefore pose no risk.

There are other sources of tension for both countries, including Turkey’s human rights record; American support for the Syrian Kurdish fighters whom Turkey considers terrorists; and the continued residence in the United States of a Muslim cleric accused of plotting the failed coup attempt against Erdogan’s government in 2016.

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