1st meeting of Turkiye-US Strategic Mechanism to be held in New York
Top Turkish, US diplomats to hold 1st meeting of strategic mechanism at foreign ministers level on Wednesday
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and his US counterpart Antony Blinken will meet in the US state of New York on Wednesday for the first meeting of the Turkiye-US Strategic Mechanism at the foreign ministers level.
Anadolu Agency compiled the details of Cavusoglu's May 16-19 visit to the US and the issues to be addressed at the foreign ministers meeting that will be held on Wednesday, as well as the current state of bilateral relations.
Cavusoglu will attend the first-ever International Migration Review Forum within the margins of the UN General Assembly.
He will also attend the Global Food Security Call to Action ministerial meeting to be hosted by Blinken and hold bilateral meetings.
Cavusoglu and Blinken are expected to discuss all aspects of Turkish-American relations as part of the strategic mechanism.
Bilateral dialogue intensifies at high level
The first step of the strategic mechanism was taken during the meetings of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his US counterpart Joe Biden in the Italian capital Rome on Oct. 31, 2021.
Erdogan and Biden agreed to establish a strategic mechanism that promotes high-level dialogue and addresses issues on which Turkiye and the US do not fully agree, along with issues they are working on.
During the April 4 visit of US Under Secretary of State Victoria Nuland to Ankara, the Turkiye-US Strategic Mechanism was launched, with the meeting at the level of foreign ministers to be aimed for this year.
- Invitation from Blinken to Cavusoglu
The invitation for the ministerial meeting came from Blinken during the process of the strategic mechanism that has been progressing positively.
Cavusoglu said Blinken invited him and that they will meet on Wednesday, noting: "We want this mechanism to be result-oriented. We want both sides to take steps in this regard."
The topics of common interest for the two countries, including the economic and defense cooperation, counter-terrorism, and regional and global issues will be discussed in Wednesday's ministerial meeting.
- Result-oriented dialogue, diplomacy
The initiation of the strategic mechanism became an important step for activating the bilateral dialogue mechanisms and maintaining deep-rooted alliance relations at all levels on the axis of diplomacy.
It is foreseen that the two countries' close and result-oriented dialogue at all levels to resolve differences of opinion and better evaluate the existing opportunities will give a positive impetus to the relations.
Trade and investment are at the forefront among the most important areas to work together for both Turkiye and the US that focus on how to strengthen cooperation while repairing relations for the future through the strategic mechanism.
- Controversial issues in relations
Among various problems that harm Turkiye-US relations are the US' cooperation with the terrorist organization PYD-YPG/PKK, its attitude toward the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), disagreements over the S-400, and Washington's sanctions against Turkiye.
In the meeting between Cavusoglu and Blinken, it is expected that the Turkish side will once again express its expectation from the US to take new and concrete cooperation steps in the fight against terrorism.
Also, Turkiye's demand from the US to take a clear stance against the terrorist FETO remains on the table in all contacts between the two countries, and is expected to come to the fore at the ministerial meeting.
In its more than 35-year terror campaign against Turkiye, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Turkiye, the US, and the EU – has been responsible for the deaths of over 40,000 people. The YPG is the PKK's Syrian offshoot.
FETO and its US-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016 in Turkiye, in which 251 people were killed and 2,734 injured.
The Turkish government accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.
During the meeting, expectations will be expressed for the US' language of sanctions to be replaced by cooperation, and that the steps taken by Turkiye in line with its security needs will not be associated with sanctions.
Meanwhile, in Turkiye-US relations, negotiations on the purchase of new generation F-16s and the modernization of existing F-16s also remain fresh.
- Global, regional issues
It is also aimed that the strategic mechanism will contribute positively to the bilateral consultation and coordination on global and regional developments.
In the Cavusoglu-Blinken meeting, it is expected that the current developments about the Ukraine-Russia war and discussions about the NATO membership process of Finland and Sweden will be addressed.
Developments in Turkiye-Armenia relations may also be included within the meeting agenda.
*Writing by Seda Sevencan in Istanbul.