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Biden Calls Erdogan, Mentions F-16s, and Discusses Sweden



Biden Calls Erdogan, Mentions F-16s, and Discusses Sweden

(CTN News) –  During a phone discussion, US President Joe Biden and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan addressed various matters, including Turkey’s potential acquisition of F-16 fighter fighters from the US.

President Biden expressed openness to reaching an agreement on the F-16s but highlighted the need for Turkey to remove its opposition to Sweden’s NATO membership.

President Biden congratulated Erdogan on Election Victory.

Biden Calls Erdogan

President Biden congratulated Erdogan on his recent presidential election victory during the call. Biden later told reporters that he addressed the F-16s with Erdogan and informed him of the US interest in settling the issue with Sweden. He said that they would continue talking the next week.

The Turkish presidency issued a brief statement following the call, stating that the leaders agreed to strengthen cooperation in all sectors of bilateral relations, particularly in the face of regional and global challenges.

Turkey has attempted to purchase $20 billion in F-16s from the United States, but US Congress has stymied the sale. Despite the Biden administration’s support for the agreement, it has not moved forward quickly.

Meanwhile, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Sweden and Finland, both traditionally non-aligned countries, have asked for NATO membership. All NATO member states, however, must approve their bids.

Turkey has confirmed Finland’s NATO membership.

Turkey has confirmed Finland’s NATO membership but continues to oppose Sweden’s owing to its alleged harboring of terrorists. Sweden’s request has yet to be authorized by Hungary.

Before the forthcoming leader’s conference in Lithuania in mid-July, Washington is prioritizing Sweden’s NATO membership. President Biden’s correspondence with President Erdogan included congratulating him on his re-election and expressing a desire to discuss Erdogan’s objection to Sweden joining NATO later.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine prompted Sweden and Finland to apply to join NATO, and Erdogan’s opposition to Sweden’s bid could be due to a variety of factors, including tensions with Sweden’s Kurdish diaspora and a desire to secure F-16 fighter jets following Turkey’s withdrawal from the F-35 program.

Biden’s relationship with Erdogan has been strained, with Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump, siding with Erdogan and other dictatorial governments. Nonetheless, Biden offered Erdogan his belated congratulations, highlighting the complexities of US-Turkish relations.

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