Turkey has hired former CIA director Porter Goss to lobby for the Ankara government?s interests in the United States, a report reveals. Citing forms filed with the US Department of Justice, The Intercept news website reported Turkey had hired Goss through Dickstein Shapiro, a US-based law firm and lobbying group, to support Ankara?s interests in Washington. The Intercept is dedicated to reporting on documents leaked by the fugitive American intelligence whistleblower Edward Snowden.
According to the form, Goss, who served as the CIA director from 2004 to 2006 under the George W. Bush administration, will ?provide counsel in connection with the extension and strengthening of the Turkish-American relationship in a number of key areas that are the subject of debate in Congress, including trade, energy security, counter-terrorism efforts and efforts to build regional stability in the broader Middle East and Europe.? Dickstein Shapiro Chairman James Kelly also said that Goss ?has unique experience with national security issues, and our clients will benefit greatly from his knowledge on a range of domestic and international energy, security, and policy matters.?
The Intercept also described Goss? decision to lobby for Turkey as an ?odd choice? for the ex-CIA chief because he once declared that "there is no viable alternative to freedom ? only freedom offers men and women the opportunity to reach their full potential.?
It was referring to severe widespread criticism of Turkey?s crackdown on journalists as well as its rampant social media censorship.
Ankara has also hired former Democratic House leader Dick Gephardt by paying him USD1.4 million per year to push for US support for the Takfiri militant groups operating in Syria, according to US government documents.
Citing numerous reports and media accounts, The Intercept said that money and arms for terrorists groups, including ISIL ?have flowed across the Turkish border into Syria and Iraq.?
Turkey, an outspoken critic of the Syrian government, has also come under fire for not doing enough to halt the advance of the ISIL terrorist group as well as for its perceived reluctance to crack down on militants using its territory to travel into Syria, gripped by deadly unrest since March 2011.
The US and its regional allies -- especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey -- are supporting the militants operating inside the Arab country.
In February, Turkey and the United States signed a deal to train and arm what the two sides called moderate militants.
US-based news outlet Huffington Post reported in April that Turkey and Saudi Arabia are in high-level talks aimed at establishing a military alliance with the purpose of intervening in Syria and attempting to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad.
According to the United Nations, more than 220,000 people have been killed and millions displaced due to the turmoil that has gripped Syria for more than four years. DB/MKA/HMV
Last modified onSaturday, 06 May 2017 10:07
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