Kerry: Turkish Comments Complicate Mideast Process
By: Suzan Fraser and Matthew Lee / Associated Press U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Friday that comments by the Turkish prime minister equating Zionism to a crime against humanity complicate the efforts to find peace in the Middle East. Speaking at a news conference in Ankara with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, Kerry stressed the “urgent need to promote a spirit of tolerance, and that includes all of the public statements made by all leaders.”
Background Briefing: En Route to Turkey
Below is the State Department transcript for the background briefing of Secretary Kerry’s trip to Turkey.
Turkey, an Unhelpful Ally?
In a critical article published in the New York Times, Halil M. Karaveli, a senior fellow at the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute and the Silk Road Studies Program, argues that Turkish policy in Syria has been unhelpful and calls on the U.S. administration to “reassess the assumption that Turkey is playing a constructive role in ending the violence in Syria.” Karaveli argues that “Turkey is part of the problem,” and that “it is exacerbating Syria’s sectarian strife, rather than contributing to a peaceful and pluralistic solution.”
Secretary Kerry to travel to Turkey
Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to stop in Turkey during his first overseas trip to Europe and the Middle East. State Department Spokesperson Victoria Nuland said “Secretary Kerry will travel to Ankara, Turkey, where he will meet with Turkish officials to discuss our strategic priorities – from ending the crisis in Syria to promoting regional stability, peace, and security – as well as explore areas to deepen U.S.-Turkey bilateral cooperation, including counterterrorism cooperation.”
Turkey-U.S. ties 'closer than ever' says Turkish Ambassador Tan
By: Semih Idiz / Al-Monitor Turkey Pulse The Pew Research Center indicates that Turks are still among the world champions in anti-Americanism. Pew’s “Global Attitude Project” for 2012 showed that 72% of Turks rated the US unfavorably, while only 15% rated it favorably. Only Pakistan and Jordan, out of a list of 20 countries, proved worse than Turkey in this respect. It’s easy to conclude then that there is little hope for Turkish-US ties to develop further, even if they have maintained their military alliance for the sake of practical reasons. And yet the two countries are seen to be enjoying one of the best periods ever in their bilateral ties, according to Turkey’s ambassador to Washington, Namik Tan.