Turkish opposition urges Trump to prod Erdogan on rights

Turkey’s influence in our political history goes back to the days of the Ottoman empire

Turkey’s influence in our political history goes back to the days of the Ottoman empire

Trump greeted Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the entrance to the West Wing with a handshake and small talk out of range of reporters.

Trump did not address the issue.

Trump also offered compassion and support for "horrible terrorist attacks" against the Turkish people in recent years.

Both issues poisoned ties between Erdogan and former USA president Barack Obama, but there now appears to be an opening for Trump to rebuild bridges. The rollout of this is to try and smooth over feelings over this change in policy you mentioned, which is that the United States has chose to go in a direction in Syria that Turkey doesn't agree with.

According to the White House, Trump and Erdogan are expected to "discuss how to further strengthen our bilateral relationship and deepen our cooperation to confront terrorism in all its forms".

President Donald Trump's meeting Tuesday with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is part of a USA effort to offset damage to relations between the two countries from the president's decision to arm Kurdish fighters in Syria. "Given Trump's clear fondness for autocrats and disinterest in upholding human rights norms at home and overseas, Turks who look to the United States to support their aspirations for a democratic future have little reason for optimism that they have a friend in the White House".

US prosecutors say the 2013 charges pertained to a massive bribery scheme executed by Zarrab involving the payment of tens of millions of dollars to Cabinet-level Turkish officials and high-level bank officers in Turkey to facilitate Zarrab's transactions on behalf of Iran.

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Trump's willingness to partner with authoritarian rulers and overlook their shortcomings on democracy and human rights has alarmed USA lawmakers of both parties.

Probably not. First of all, the decision to arm the Syrian Kurds may have been announced Tuesday, and it may have been timed to fall between the Turkish referendum and Erdogan's visit.

Trump launched cruise missiles last month at a Syrian air base after accusing Assad of using chemical weapons. Since 2011, it has been seeking to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad and to stop the two million Syrian Kurdish minority gaining control of a broad band of territory along Turkey's southern frontier. If this proves to be the case and the USA then decides to withdraw its support from PYD in order to please Turkey or put pressure on the Kurdish militia, many players will jump in, including Russian Federation and Iran, to use the PYD for different purposes.

This comes days after the US President Donald Trump agreed to arm Kurdish YPG units as part of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), that are in fight against ISIS extremists in the group's de facto capital of Raqqa.

US -backed Kurdish-led Syrian forces are advancing toward Raqqa after capturing several nearby towns and villages recently.

On the contrary, one week before Erdogan's visit to Washington, Trump has given his authorization for the direct arming of the YPG fighters in an apparent message that Pentagon will continue cooperating with local Kurdish fighters as US proxy on the ground for upcoming Raqqa offensive.

"There's no place for terrorist organizations in the future of our region", added Erdogan. They think "Turks are going to have to swallow it" and after protesting for a while, Ankara will not do much to hinder that decision because it will need the U.S.in the long-term and have no other options.

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"Erdogan was nearly completely absent during the Muslim travel ban which was very surprising - Erdogan usually has something to say about everything", said Cagaptay, referring to Trump's early attempts to block travel to the United States from Muslim-majority Arab countries that got shot down twice in federal courts. Observers, meanwhile, will be closely watching how Trump handles Turkey's deteriorating human rights situation.

Last month, Turkey voted to expand Erdogan's powers as president in a referendum that many critics decried as tainted.

The meeting took place just one day after Mr Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, who led the investigation into purported ties between Mr Trump's campaign team and Russian Federation as well as their possible interference into the 2016 U.S. election.

Mattis has played down the friction between the allies, saying that while "it's not always tidy", they will resolve any differences.

President Trump on Tuesday described Oval Office talks during which he reportedly shared classified information with Russia's foreign minister as "a great meeting". Before being ousted over exposure of his ties to Russia, Flynn was a campaign surrogate for Trump past year when he participated in a meeting on an extrajudicial rendition of Gulen that, according to a Wall Street Journal report, would amount to an end run on the formal extradition process.

It's unclear what country was the source of Trump's intelligence.

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