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"Politicians from Turkey and the U.S. comment two countries relationship and current problems, foresight future relations... Presidents, Prime  Ministers, Ministers and Members of Parlement  all speak to TURKOFAMERICA, share their experiences and views with our readers. All exclusive interview from Ankara and Washington, D.C...  

 

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Continued Turkish American Outreach to Elected Officials

Responding to TCA's call for outreach to elected officials, four Turkish Americans joined members of Congress and industry representatives in Chicago, IL at the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) PAC Chicago Retreat on October 20-21, 2017. Eleven Congressional Black Caucus members attended, including Assistant Democratic Leader Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC/6th), Ranking Member of the Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, and Emerging Threats Rep. Greg Meeks (D-NY/5th), Foreign Affairs Committee Member Rep. Robin Kelly (D-IL/2nd), Turkey Caucus members Reps. GK Butterfield (D-NC/1st), Danny Davis (D-IL/7th), Hank Johnson (D-GA/4th), Brenda Lawrence (D-MI/14th), Stacey Plaskett (D-VA/AL), Bobby Rush (D-IL/1st), and Reps. Joyce Beatty (D-OH/3rd) and Gwen Moore (D-WI/4th). The four Turkish American participants were Cem Karsan, Elhan Orhon, Dr. Hande Ozdinler, and Hakan Akgun, all of Chicago, IL.

Turkey Cancels Justice Ministry Visit to U.S. Due to Visa Row

Turkey's Justice Ministry said on Tuesday it had cancelled a planned study visit to the United States due to the widening diplomatic row between the countries over the issuing of visas.  Local media earlier reported that U.S. authorities had rejected visa requests from members of the delegation, but the Justice Ministry said it had taken the initiative and cancelled the trip.  "Due to the recent visa crisis between the two countries, the visit was cancelled by our Ministry," it said in a statement, adding that there were no visa applications to be rejected. The delegation had planned a study visit to the United States, at the invitation of U.S. authorities, between Oct. 29 and Nov. 4, the ministry said. The pro-government Daily Sabah newspaper said the delegation had planned to study the U.S. penal system and visit American prisons.

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Turkey Opens Largest Foreign Military Base in Mogadishu

WASHINGTON — VOA - Turkey’s largest foreign military base in the world opened Saturday in Mogadishu, in a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by Somali leaders, top Turkish military officials and diplomats. Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire and the head of the Turkish military, General Hulusi Akar have jointly inaugurated the 4 square kilometer (1.54 square mile) facility, which holds three military residential complexes, training venues, and sports courts. It had been under construction for the last two years.

‘Turkey Has A Big Role to Play’ in Syria, US Secretary of State Tillerson Says

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson recognized Turkey's role in resolving the ongoing Syrian crisis during a press briefing Tuesday. Speaking about the situation in Syria and related peace processes, Tillerson said that there were two conflicts underway in Syria: the war against Daesh and the civil war "that created the conditions for [Daesh] to emerge," which is why the U.S. had been hoping to avoid the outbreak of civil war.

Why is Turkey Buying the S-400 Russian Missile Defence System?

Turkey, which boasts the second-largest army in NATO, announced last week, on Tuesday, it had inked a deal to buy an S-400 (NATO version SA-21 Growler) missile defence system for $2-3 billion from Russia. The deal led NATO members to question Turkey's move and what it means for their alliance with NATO. The parties did not share the details of the S-400 agreement due to its sensitivity. But according to initial agreements, next year Turkey will receive two S-400 missile batteries from Russia and in the next two years will produce two batteries on Turkish soil. The agreement dates back to November 2016, however, at the end of April 2017, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu made it clear that they were in talks with Russia regarding the S-400s and negotiations about joint production and costs have picked up steam since then.

NDECC Looks for Ethnic Community Leaders

National Democratic Ethnic Coordinating Council (NDECC) is looking for ethnic leaders in some Congressional districts which dominate by Republican congressmen. If anyone in community are interested in providing leadership in Democratic efforts in any of these districts, send along contact information for anyone you can suggest to  Jim Zogby, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Sisters by Heart: Üsküdar, Brooklyn to Make Most of Commercial Exchange

Two years ago, Istanbul's historical district Üsküdar and New York City's largest and fastest growing borough Brooklyn struck a sister city deal with a view of promoting cultural and commercial ties between Turks and Americans. Since then, the miscellaneous projects and cultural events have knotted the friendship ties of the two communities to the extent that has inspired Brooklyn Mayor Eric L. Adams to "stake out to find a home in Turkey," as he put it in a meeting with Daily Sabah.

American Military Officials Question Syrian Kurdish Links to Turkish PKK

By Rowan Glass - The situation in Rojava, the predominantly-Kurdish region in Northern Syria which, since 2012, has maintained an autonomous government and its own self-defense forces, is tense. Despite firm Turkish opposition to the PYD, the governing party in Rojava, and a history of Turkish-led combat operations against the SDF, the umbrella defense forces of Rojava, the #United States have provided military support for the Kurds in their war against ISIS since 2014.

Murat Guzel: Tillerson's Visit to Istanbul Strengthens U.S.-Turkey Relations

Just over 30 years ago, I emigrated from Turkey to continue my post-graduate degrees at Lehigh University to pursue my American dream. As Secretary Rex Tillerson visited my birth country two weeks ago, I reflect on just how far the U.S.-Turkey relationship has come in the last three decades. The exponential trade growth between our two countries, driven by numerous "commercial diplomats" like myself, deserves greater reflection on the anniversary of the darkest chapter in Turkey's recent history — the failed coup on July 15, 2016.

Friends Do Not Deceive Each Other, Erdoğan Tells US General Who Advised YPG's Name Change

Ankara responded Sunday to remarks by a senior U.S. general who admitted on Friday that he personally convinced terror group PKK's Syrian armed wing to change its name so that the U.S. could provide them military aid and a seat at the negotiating table, saying that ally states, "Do not deceive each other." General Raymond Thomas, Commander of the U.S. Special Forces Command, said Turkey was equating the People's Protection Units (YPG) with the PKK, so a solution was needed.

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