Turkish chief of staff hosts Qatari counterpart
AA File PhotoTurkish Chief of General Staff Gen. Hulusi Akar hosted his counterpart, Qatari Armed Forces Chief of Staff Ghanim bin Shaheen Al-Ghanim, on Nov. 16, as global diplomatic efforts aimed at responding to threats posed by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) intensified in the wake of the series of attacks in Paris late on Nov. 13.
Gen. Akar hosted visiting Al-Ghanim at the General Staff headquarters, the state-run Anadolu Agency reported, without elaborating on the content of the meeting.
The visit coincided with the G-20 Summit in the Turkish Mediterranean resort province of Antalya, where the world’s top industrial and developing nations were set to outline their coordinated response to the Paris attacks, which U.S. President Barack Obama described as an “attack on the civilized world.”
Late last month, Gen. Akar attended a seventh gathering of the U.S.-led coalition fighting ISIL. Earlier in October, the top commander hosted Saudi Arabian Chief of Staff Gen. Abdulrahman Bin Saleh al-Banyan at a closed-door meeting in Ankara.
In July, Turkey made a preliminary step toward joining the counter-offensive by allowing U.S. planes to use İncirlik Air Base in the southern province of Adana to attack ISIL positions in Syria. On July 24, Turkish warplanes purportedly attacked ISIL targets in Syria, but not as part of the coalition operation.
In late August, the Turkish Foreign Ministry announced Turkish jets had joined the U.S.-led coalition in the fight against ISIL, hitting targets in Syria.