A BEHIND-the-scene meeting took place between Jared Kushner and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the Presidential Complex in Ankara yesterday.
Kushner, American President Donald Trump’s adviser and son-in-law, has been on the Middle East tour and Turkey was his last stop. Also attending the meeting was Erdogan’s Treasury, Finance Minister and son-in-law, Berat Albayrak.
It has been reported that Kushner is seeking Erdogan’s support for the upcoming Israeli-Palestinian peace initiative. Also on the agenda for discussion was trade relations between the two countries, according to news reports in various local and international media.
Al-Monitor went further to report as the only “two sons-in-law” joined the meeting, Erdogan kept all discussion in the ‘family.’
The meeting reportedly took two hours and Albayrak tweeted how both sides discussed ways to further enhance their financial collaboration, according to Turkey’s state news agency Anadolu.
“I joined Mr. President’s (Erdogan) meeting with the United States President Donald Trump’s senior advisor, Jared Kushner. After that, we discussed steps to improve economic cooperation between our countries in a head-to-head meeting with Kushner,” Treasury and Finance Minister Albayrak tweeted.
Turkish T24 reported Erdogan and Kushner possibly discussed the issue of Trump’s unexpected announcement in December he would withdraw 2 000 American ground troops from northern Syria and “safe zone” which Ankara wants to control as a buffer area against the US-backed Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) militia.
The other issues Erdogan may have been discussed with Kushner the extradition of the Pennsylvania-based Muslim preacher Fethullah Gulen, who Turkey claims was the leader and chief orchestrator of the 2016 failed coup. Gulen has always strongly denied and dismissed the accusations.
Erdogan and Kushner also possibly discussed F-35 jets deal as Trump made a statement last August that he temporarily suspended the transfer to Turkey of 100 F-35 fighter jets following the crises between two countries over the ongoing imprisonment of American pastor Brunson in Turkey.
Last October Turkey released Brunson who had been held over two years on terrorism charges related to the 2016 coup.