White House confirms PM Erdoğan’s meeting with Obama on May 16
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
U.S. President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (R). Hürriyet photoThe White House confirmed today that US President Barack Obama will meet with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in Washington on May 16.
The intention for a prime ministerial visit to Washington was brought to the attention of the Obama administration after the presidential elections in the U.S., but disagreements over a number of issues and Turkey’s ongoing dispute with Israel nixed Ankara’s plans. The visit could only be possible after Israeli apologized to Turkey and Turkey accepted this apology, under the mediation of Obama, who played a crucial role in the process. “The visit of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to Washington was fixed in a phone conversation on the day Israel apologized to Turkey,” diplomatic sources said. Erdoğan and Obama had a phone conversation on March 22, after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu read the apology statement on the phone.
The agenda of Erdoğan’s meeting with Obama will be fully-loaded, ranging from Turkey’s current peace process to the turmoil in Syria, from the developments in Cyprus to Ankara’s ambitious energy deals with northern Iraq. Along with these cases, one of the most important issues will be the Turkish-Israeli normalization process. In a demonstration of the importance attached to this normalization process, Washington is continuing to closely monitor the steps taken and those that will be taken. This monitoring process is accompanied by urgings to both sides not to break this positive climate.