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25 Dec, 2018 01:48

Trump ‘open’ to meeting Erdogan in Turkey next year

Trump ‘open’ to meeting Erdogan in Turkey next year

Donald Trump is “open” to the possibility of holding a face to face meeting with the Turkish President, the White House said, after Erdogan invited the US President to visit Ankara next year.

“While nothing definite is being planned, the President is open to a potential meeting in the future,” White House spokesman Hogan Gidley said in a statement.

The invitation to visit Turkey as some point in 2019 was issued by Erdogan during what the American leader described as a “long and productive” phone conversation over the weekend, following the US’ somewhat abrupt decision to withdraw its forces from Syria.

Also on rt.com US signs order to pull out forces from Syria, as Trump says Turkey will eliminate remnants of ISIS

According to Erdogan's spokesman, Washington’s decision was heavily influenced by Ankara’s commitment to target Kurdish “terrorists” in Syria. Still, the withdrawal of the some 2,000 US troops currently stationed in Syria will be “slow & highly coordinated,” Trump tweeted on Sunday.

Following Trump’s move, Turkey decided to postpone its military operation against Syrian Kurdish fighters in northeast Syria. It, however, did not stop Erdogan from renewing his threats on Monday, as he deployed additional troops to the border.

Also on rt.com Win for Turkey, loss for Kurds, election rhetoric for Trump – experts on US pullout from Syria

Meanwhile, Ankara is preparing to receive an American military delegation this week to discuss strategic developments in the region. “They will discuss how to coordinate (the withdrawal) with their counterparts,” Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin told reporters.

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