No breakthroughs anticipated from first Biden-Erdogan assembly By Reuters


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: U.S. Vice President Joe Biden (L) attends a bilateral assembly with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan in Washington March 31, 2016. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts/File Picture

By Gabriela Baczynska and Humeyra Pamuk

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – U.S. President Joe Biden and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan will focus on Ankara’s buy of Russian S-400 missiles throughout face-to-face talks on Monday however there’s little hope they’ll resolve a bitter dispute that divides NATO.

Turkey has NATO’s second-biggest army after the US however disagreements over Syria, human rights, the remedy of Armenians within the Ottoman Empire and tensions within the jap Mediterranean have all strained their ties.

Since taking workplace in January, Biden has recognised the 1915 bloodbath of Armenians as genocide and stepped up criticism of Turkey’s human rights document, adopting a cooler tone in the direction of Erdogan than his predecessor Donald Trump.

White Home nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan mentioned the 2 leaders, who’re attending a NATO summit in Brussels, would additionally contact on Afghanistan, Libya and China throughout their first direct encounter since Biden turned president.

“They are going to discuss political and financial points which might be tougher … which have been challenges in our relationship, together with human rights-related points,” Sullivan advised reporters on arriving in Brussels late on Sunday.

Erdogan mentioned on leaving Turkey the identical night that he anticipated an “unconditional strategy” from Biden to maneuver on from previous troubles.

“Turkey is not only any nation, it’s an allied nation. We’re two NATO allies,” he advised reporters.

“There are various points relating to defence trade that have been left on the desk. An important one in every of these is the F-35 challenge,” Erdogan mentioned of Washington’s resolution to take away Turkey from a fighter jet programme.

One space the place Erdogan hopes to showcase a central Turkish function within the NATO alliance is in Afghanistan, the place Turkey has supplied to protect and function Kabul airport to safe entry to the nation after the U.S.-prompted NATO withdrawal.

However with so many factors of rivalry, hopes for any substantial breakthrough within the strained relationship are slim.

“Whereas each side are anticipated to pursue some pragmatic engagement and neither is considering a showdown, the assembly won’t present Erdogan with any significant dividend,” consultancy Teneo mentioned in a notice forward of the talks.

“Not one of the main friction factors will probably be solved, that means that U.S.-Turkey ties will proceed to be fraught with difficulties and characterised by a frosty tone.”

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