Turkey, US to activate ‘strategic dialogue mechanism’
Turkey and the United States have agreed to activate a new mechanism of strategic dialogue between the two allies, aiming to deepen and further expand the bilateral cooperation, at a meeting held between the two countries’ senior officials in Ankara.
Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Önal and U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman met in Ankara on March 5 and discussed bilateral relations and regional issues, including Ukraine, read a statement issued by the Foreign Ministry over the weekend.
It informed that mutual commitment to deepen bilateral cooperation in various fields through a sustained and structured dialogue was reiterated during the meeting, saying, “It was underlined that despite differences on some issues, Turkey and the United States have a larger positive agenda, including economic and trade relations, combatting terrorism and military/defense industry cooperation.”
Önal and Sherman have also discussed practical steps to be taken for the activation of a strategic dialogue mechanism between the two countries as agreed by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and U.S. President Joe Biden in their meeting in Rome last year.
A statement from the U.S. State Department also noted the strategic dialogue mechanism. “The deputy secretary also underscored the importance of the U.S. - Turkey Strategic Mechanism, which will deepen and expand the already robust cooperation between our two countries,” it read.
Turkey and the U.S. differ on the latter’s continued support to the YPG in northern Syria and the former’s purchase and deployment of Russian S-400 air defense systems.
US thanks Turkey for supporting Ukraine
The two officials also discussed the latest developments in Ukraine following Russia’s military offensive.
“With regard to Ukraine, Deputy Minister Önal and Deputy Secretary Sherman confirmed our rejection and call for an end of Russia’s unacceptable attack on Ukraine,” Ankara said.
They affirmed the Turkish and U.S. support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity while emphasizing the importance of continued close coordination in addressing multi-dimensional implications of the crisis and in supporting a diplomatic solution, it added.
For its part, Washington said: “Deputy Secretary Sherman thanked Turkey for its strong and vocal support in defense of Ukraine and expressed appreciation for the solidarity among partners and NATO Allies in confronting this crisis.”