News / Europe

Obama, Turkish PM to Discuss Syria

U.S. President Barack Obama delivers a statement from the East Room of the White House in Washington, May 15, 2013.
U.S. President Barack Obama delivers a statement from the East Room of the White House in Washington, May 15, 2013.
President Barack Obama welcomes Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to the White House on Thursday for talks on the situation in Syria and other regional security and bilateral issues.

Obama's relationship with Erdogan is among the closest he has with any world leader.   

They speak frequently on the phone.  Syria has been a key topic as the death toll there continues to mount.  

Turkey has played a key role in the provision of non-lethal aid and political support for Syria's rebels.

Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses supporters and lawmakers at the parliament in Ankara, Turkey, May 14, 2013.Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses supporters and lawmakers at the parliament in Ankara, Turkey, May 14, 2013.
x
Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses supporters and lawmakers at the parliament in Ankara, Turkey, May 14, 2013.
Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses supporters and lawmakers at the parliament in Ankara, Turkey, May 14, 2013.
In a recent NBC News interview, Erdogan urged the United States to take more responsibility to end fighting in Syria.  He also discussed evidence of chemical weapons use, saying Obama's "red line" was crossed long ago.

Soner Cagaptay, with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, says Ankara has major worries about a "weak and divided" Syria, which it is feared could become like Somalia.

"I think Turkey is feeling the heat of the Syria crisis and is here to ask for assistance from the U.S. to help depose the Assad regime and if not to shield itself off from the fallout of the Syria crisis," said Cagaptay.  "Obviously [at] the White House there is very little appetite in Washington to send troops or put boots on the ground in Syria, so these two leaders will disagree on what to do although they both agree the Assad regime should go."

On the eve of the talks, press secretary Jay Carney was asked about pressure from Erdogan on President Obama to take a stronger stance on Syria.

Carney stuck to the standard White House description of current U.S. policy, saying the U.S. would work with Turkey and other partners to bring about a political transition in Syria.

"Ways that we can, working together and with our partners, bring about the transition that is so essential in Syria, including the efforts that are under way to revitalize the Geneva Framework for a political transition -- we've been working with the Russians on that matter as well as others -- and including the ways that we are working to provide assistance to the opposition and to the Syrian people," said Carney.

Cagaptay says that despite differences in approach, both men seek the same objectives.

"There are divergences in tactics between the two leaders though I should emphasize that in the end they both want the same thing, they want Assad to go, the question is Turkey wants it faster than the U.S. is willing to commit [to]," he added.

Prime Minister Erdogan and President Obama will hold a joint news conference after their Oval Office talks.

Later, the White House says Obama will host a working dinner with the Turkish leader.

You May Like

India PM Modi's party distances itself from religious conversions

BJP under fire for being slow to rein in hardline affiliate groups allegedly trying to promote a Hindu-dominant agenda by luring Muslims and Christians to convert to Hinduism More

Anti-Whaling Group Found in Contempt of Court

Radical environmentalists who threw acid and smoke bombs at Japanese whalers in the waters off Antarctica continue their campaign to disrupt Japan's annual whale hunt More

UN's Ban Urges End to Discrimination Against Ebola Workers

Ban was speaking in Guinea on the second day of a whistle-stop tour aimed at thanking healthcare workers of the countries at the heart of the epidemic More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Prof. Hollenbrook from: USA
May 16, 2013 9:07 AM
hey Obama, this is worse than bowing to the Queen of Saudi Arabia... Erdogan is Muslim terrorist... Obama, you may as well run around yelling AllahUakbar...

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacksi
X
December 19, 2014 12:45 AM
The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid