CIA, Turkey to boost cooperation in coming months
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
AFP photoThe United States’ top spy paid an unannounced two-day visit to Ankara to discuss deepening instability in Syria, the joint fight against terrorism and closer cooperation on pressing regional issues “in coming months.”
David Petraeus, the CIA chief, held meetings with top Turkish officials both yesterday and on March 12, the Hürriyet Daily News learned. Petraeus met with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan yesterday and his Turkish counterpart, Hakan Fidan, head of the National Intelligence Organization (MİT), the previous day.
An official from the U.S. Embassy said that Turkish and Amerian officials discussed “more fruitful cooperation on the region’s most pressing issues in the coming months.” Turkish officials said Erdoğan and Petraeus exchanged views on the Syrian crisis and anti-terror fight.
The officials further discussed an intelligence-sharing mechanism launched in 2007.
Petraeus’ visit coincided with that of Kofi Annan, the United Nations and Arab League’s special envoy to Syria. Though both officials stayed in the same hotel in Ankara, there was no confirmation of a potential meeting between the two.
Annan, who is trying to push the Syrian leadership to end its measures against anti-government rebels, is the latest international figure to have met Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
The PKK is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union.