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On Friday, January 15, the Atlantic Council IN TURKEY hosted a public, on-the-record webinar on The Biden Administration and Turkey: Transition in Bilateral Relations?
In recent years, US-Turkey relations have been beset by a series of disagreements over both bilateral and regional issues. Two of the most contentious issues are Turkey’s purchase of the Russian-made S-400 defense system, for which the outgoing Trump administration recently imposed sanctions, and US support to the YPG militia. In spite of the headlines which command most of the attention in commentary over bilateral relations, the US and Turkey also share key interests with potential for greater collaboration.
Cooperation with Turkey will be key to maintain security and stability in this critical geostrategic region, especially when facing a resurgent Russia, which Biden has signaled will occupy a significant amount of his administration’s strategic thinking. The prospective of more cordial NATO and transatlantic ties under Biden should also reassure NATO ally Turkey. It remains to be seen how Turkey fits into the Biden administration’s broader strategy for transatlantic engagement also with partners such as the European Union and United Kingdom.
Will the US and Turkey should take the opportunity of a changing US administration to undertake fresh dialogue over the outstanding issues and find a path forward through compromise bearing in the mutual benefits of cooperation?
Defne Sadıklar Arslan
Director, Atlantic Council IN TURKEY
James F. Jeffrey
Chair of the Middle East Program, Wilson Center
Former US Ambassador to Turkey; and Former Special Representative for Syria Engagement and Special Envoy to the Global Coalition To Defeat ISIS
Board Member, Atlantic Council
Former Foreign Minister of the Kingdom of Spain
Chairman, Centre for Economics and Foreign Policy Studies (EDAM)
Visiting Scholar, Carnegie Europe
Sir Peter J. Westmacott
Distinguished Ambassadorial Fellow, Future Europe Initiative, Atlantic Council
Former Ambassador of the United Kingdom to the United States, France and Turkey
Matthew J. Bryza
Nonresident Senior Fellow, Eurasia Center and Global Energy Center, Atlantic Council
Former US Ambassador to Azerbaijan; and Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Europe and Eurasia