Erdogan and the USA must avoid crisis, Biden informs Erdogan

On Sunday, President Joe Biden spoke to Recep Tayyip Erdan, Turkish President, that their countries need to better manage differences after the testing of the alliance between NATO allies by Turkey's threats not only to recognize the U.S. ambassador but also its purchase of a Russian-made missile defense system.

Erdogan and the USA must avoid crisis, Biden informs Erdogan

Biden stated that they were looking forward to a productive conversation as the leaders appeared before journalists after nearly an hour of closed door talks. Questions about whether Turkey was too close to Russia and human rights were not answered by the president.

Biden reiterated Turkey's importance in NATO as well as the U.S. defense partnership. However, he raised concerns with Erdogan about the Russian S-400 missile systems. The White House issued a statement following the meeting.

Despite the controversy surrounding the Russian-made 2017 acquisition, the Turkish president said that he is open to purchasing a second Russian missile systems.

Recent weeks have seen intense scrutiny of Turkey's NATO ally role.

Erdogan said that 10 foreign ambassadors calling for the release of a prisoned philanthropist must be declared persona nugra at an Oct. 23 rally. Osman Kavala is a businessman and philanthropist who has been in prison since 2017, despite not being convicted. The U.S., French, and German envoys had issued statements seeking to resolve the matter.

Although Erdogan didn't respond to the threat, it was indicative of the growing tensions between the U.S. and Erdogan.

Erdogan said in September that "I cannot honestly state that there is a healthy proces in Turkish-American relations," according to the state-run Anadolu news agency.

Erdogan's office stated in a statement that the meeting took place in a positive atmosphere in which leaders expressed their "joint desire to further strengthen and enhance Turkey-U.S. relations" and decided to create a common mechanism.

In the statement, it also stated that there was satisfaction with the "mutual steps taken to combat climate change."

Turkey was expelled from a U.S. program for buying F-35 combat aircrafts. Defense officials were also sanctioned after the purchase of the Russian-made S-400 systems. The U.S. strongly opposes the use of Russian systems in NATO and claims it is a threat to F-35s.

Turkey believes the S-400s can be used by itself without being part of NATO systems, and thus poses no threat.

Turkey is also interested to purchase American-made F-16 fighter planes, but Biden was clear with Erdogan that such sales must be completed, according to a senior Biden administration official. The meeting took place while world leaders were in Rome for the Group of 20 Nations summit. An anonymous source spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to discuss private negotiations.

Erdogan stated that Turkey was not allowed to purchase Patriot missiles made in America during a CBS News interview in September. Erdogan also stated that the U.S. had not delivered F-35 stealth planes despite having paid $1.4 billion.

According to the White House, Biden and Erdogan discussed Syria's political process, humanitarian aid for Afghans, elections in Libya and the situation in the Eastern Mediterranean. They also discussed diplomatic efforts in South Caucasus.

Biden also raised concerns about Turkey's rule of law and human rights. The White House urged the countries to work more closely together and deal with "disagreements efficiently."

Erdogan's office stated in a statement that the meeting took place in a positive atmosphere in which leaders expressed their "joint desire to further strengthen and enhance Turkey-U.S. relations" and decided to create a common mechanism.

In the statement, it also stated that there was satisfaction with the "mutual steps taken to combat climate change."

Biden and Erdogan last met at NATO summit in June where they discussed the possibility that Turkey could secure and operate the international airport in Kabul (Afghanistan). Those plans were quickly canceled when the Taliban took over Afghanistan after the U.S. military withdrawal.

They didn't meet during September's U.N. General Assembly session.

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