Erdoğan, Biden meet in New York

Erdoğan, Biden meet in New York

NEW YORK - Anadolu Agency
Erdoğan, Biden meet in New York

AA photo

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan met U.S. Vice President Joe Biden on Sept. 21 on the sidelines of ongoing U.N. General Assembly meetings. 

The White House said in a statement that Biden “reiterated his unshakeable support for Turkish democracy and praised the Turkish people’s commitment to democratic institutions and the rule of law.”

Biden also pledged that the United States would provide assistance to Turkey in its investigation into “the illegal and violent coup attempt” there this summer, according to the statement.        

Biden visited Turkey in August amid tensions between Washington and Ankara regarding the extradition of U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen, who is accused of masterminding the failed coup attempt of July 15.        

Turkey has asked the U.S. to hand over Gülen. 

The vice president also condemned the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party’s (PKK) for its attacks against Turkish security forces and civilians.        

The sit-down at the Peninsula Hotel occurred on the same day Secretary of State John Kerry asked the U.N. Security Council to ground all aircraft flying above opposition-held areas in Syria to permit aid to reach besieged areas.

Turkey has pushed for a no-fly zone in Syria. 

Most observers believe Erdoğan and Biden also discussed the situation in Syria and the Euphrates Shield operation launched by Turkey last month in northern Syria to remove the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) from the area along the Turkish border.