Turkey, US security advisers hold first talks since Biden inauguration

Turkish Presidential Spokesman İbrahim Kalın and US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan discussed bilateral ties over the phone on Feb. 2. Both officials highlighted the importance of strengthening Turkish-US ties in the coming period, staying in close contact, and using dialogue channels open for constructive cooperation, state-run Anadolu Agency said.

Turkish Presidential Spokesman İbrahim (L) and U.S. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan are seen in this collage photo.


Top advisers for Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and U.S. President Joe Biden spoke on the phone on Feb. 2, marking the first official contact between the two countries since Biden took office.

Erdoğan's Chief Foreign Policy Adviser İbrahim Kalın and U.S. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan discussed issues regarding Syria, Libya, the eastern Mediterranean, Cyprus, and Nagorno-Karabakh, Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

Kalın told Sullivan that joint efforts were needed to find a solution to present disagreements between the countries such as Turkey's purchase of Russian S-400 defense systems, and the United States' support for Kurdish militia groups in northern Syria, Anadolu said.

In December, Washington imposed long-anticipated sanctions on Ankara over its acquisition of the Russian-made S-400 defense systems, a move Turkey called a "grave mistake". It also removed Turkey, a NATO ally, from its F-35 fighter jet program as a result.

Washington says the S-400s pose a threat to its F-35 fighter jets and to NATO's broader defense systems. Turkey rejects this, saying S-400s will not be integrated into NATO, and has offered to form a joint working group to examine the conflicting claims.

Ankara says its purchase of the S-400s was not a choice, but rather a necessity as it was unable to procure missile defences from other NATO allies with satisfactory conditions.