Erdogan back at the White House
By: Bulent Aliriza / CSIS On May 16 Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan meets President Barack Obama on his first visit to the White House since December 2009. Obama has reserved much of his schedule for the day to his visitor, who has won three successive elections, recently celebrated a decade as prime minister and is brimming with self-confidence. The Turkish leader will receive a very warm welcome from his host that will serve to confirm Erdogan’s view of his country’s enhanced stature in the international community. At the same time, the encounter will provide an opportunity for the two leaders to once again display their much-publicized mutual affinity. However, there are divergences, particularly on the Syrian crisis, that they will attempt to resolve or minimize behind the scenes. To read the complete text, click here.
Coordinating U.S. and Turkish Policy on Iraq
By: Michael Knights / The Washington Institute As part of his first overseas trip as secretary of state, John Kerry will soon visit Turkey. Among other issues, the visit is a vital opportunity to better align U.S. and Turkish approaches to Iraq. Washington is concerned that Turkey’s burgeoning relationship with the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) could spark open conflict between Baghdad and Erbil. Yet U.S. and Turkish objectives in Iraq are strikingly similar, providing fertile ground for strategic cooperation if both sides can look past their tactical disagreements and focus on their common aims.
Iraqi Kurds press on with oil pipe to Turkey despite U.S. fears
By: Reuters Iraqi Kurdistan will press ahead with building its own oil export pipeline to Turkey, the region’s energy minister said on Thursday, despite U.S. objections due to fears the project could lead to the break-up of Iraq.