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Blinken Visits Turkey on Sunday

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu gestures as he sits in a helicopter with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken for a tour of earthquake stricken areas of Hatay Province, at Incirlik Air Base near Adana, Turkey, Feb. 19, 2023.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken visits Turkey on Sunday to observe firsthand the devastating aftermath of of the 7.8 magnitude earthquake that has killed more than 46,000 and left millions homeless in Turkey and neighboring Syria.

While in Turkey, he is expected to meet with Turkey President Tayyip Erdogan and Mevlut Cavusoglu, Blinken’s Turkish counterpart.

The top U.S. diplomat’s meetings in Turkey follow a visit to Washington by Cavusoglu last month. The two NATO allies have tried to mend fences over disagreements on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, plus Sweden’s and Finland’s bids to enter NATO.

Against all odds, rescue workers have continued to recover people from the rubble of the February 6 earthquake, but the head of the country’s disaster response agency has said their efforts would end Sunday.