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Turkey-US ties based on strategic partnership: Erdogan

June 26, 2019 at 7:46 pm

President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan (L) meets with U.S. President Donald Trump (R) within the G20 Leaders’ Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina on December 01, 2018. [TURKISH PRESIDENCY / MURAT CETINMUHURDAR / HANDOUT – Anadolu Agency]

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday said ties between Ankara and Washington are based on a strategic partnership, Anadolu reports.

Addressing a news conference ahead of his departure to G20 Leaders’ Summit in Osaka, Japan, Erdogan said Turkey and the U.S are members of NATO.

Replying to a question on purchase of the Russian S-400 air defense systems, Erdogan said: “I don’t know if NATO countries began to impose sanctions on each other. I did not receive this impression during my meeting with [U.S. President Donald] Trump.”

US officials have urged Turkey to buy US Patriot missiles, arguing the Russian system would be incompatible with NATO systems and expose the F-35s to possible Russian subterfuge.

READ: Will Turkey be kicked out of NATO?

Turkey, however, emphasized the S-400 would not be integrated into NATO systems and would not pose a threat to the alliance.

Turkey has urged formation of a commission to clarify any technical issues, but the U.S. has failed to respond to this proposal.

Touching upon Greek Cypriots’ unilateral drilling in the Eastern Mediterranean, he noted everyone who lives in Cyprus Island has right to sea. “We cannot agree if you [the Greek side] say ‘we will bring it under control of southern Cyprus’.

Turkey’s stance is based on win-win [on Eastern Mediterranean] and that the other party should also treat Turkey with same fairness, he added.

Speaking about Syria, Erdogan said “we will bring up issue of Syria in bilateral meetings with Trump and [Russian President Vladimir Putin” on the sidelines of the G20 Summit.