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FETO on Erdogan-Trump meeting agenda

  • 12 Nov 2019

Turkey will continue to take steps towards the extradition of the US-based FETO leader, the Turkish president said ahead of a meeting with his counterpart.

US President Donald Trump with Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at a bilateral meeting during the G20 Summit in Osaka, Japan. June 29, 2019. ( Reuters )

The Turkish president on Tuesday said the fight against Fetullah Terrorist Organisation (FETO) will be the top agenda item during his meeting with the US president.

"Turkey took several steps and will continue doing so for the extradition of terrorist [group] leader [Fetullah Gulen] in Pennsylvania," Recep Tayyip Erdogan told reporters at the Istanbul Airport before departing for Washington for official talks with President Donald Trump.

FETO and its US-based leader, Fetullah Gulen are behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.

Erdogan said counterterrorism, especially security issues of common concern, economic relations and military and defence industry cooperation will also be addressed during his US visit.

"With Trump, we have set a target to raise the bilateral trade volume to $100 billion. We will find the opportunity to evaluate steps to be taken as well as the work already carried out," he said.

TRT World's Hasan Abdullah reports.

New period starts in Turkey-US ties

Erdogan said Turkey will provide documents which will demonstrate that the US meeting with YPG/PKK ringleader Ferhat Abdi Sahin was a wrong move.

"Turkey wants to start a new period with the US on the issues pertaining to security of both countries," he said.

The YPG is the Syrian offshoot of the PKK terrorist organisation. 

In its 30-year terror campaign against the Turkish state, more than 40,000 people, including women and children, have been killed.

Turkey, the US and the EU recognise the PKK as a terrorist organisation.

"We will also tell [Trump] that the US should treat the YPG/PKK terrorist organisation just like they do for Daesh and others," Erdogan added.

The Turkish president's visit comes after an October 17 deal with the US under which the YPG/PKK was bound to withdraw from the region where Ankara is conducting military Operation Peace Spring in northern Syria.

Turkey has complained that the YPG/PKK terrorists – sometimes allies of the US in the fight against Daesh – did not leave the area, and continue to launch attacks.

Turkey launched Operation Peace Spring on October 9 to eliminate the presence of the YPG/PKK from northern Syria, east of the Euphrates River.

Ankara wants YPG/PKK terrorists to withdraw from the region so that a safe zone can be created to help return some two million refugees.

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