Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has congratulated President-elect Joe Biden on his win, expressing his determination to work closely with the new United States administration.
“I believe that the strong co-operation and alliance between our countries will continue to contribute to world peace in the future, as it has done so far,” Erdogan said on Tuesday in his message to Biden.
Biden's victory was announced on Saturday. However, for a few days Erdogan held off on making any comment. A Turkish official said Ankara was planning to wait until the legal challenges levelled by President Donald Trump were resolved. However, it seems Erdogan changed his mind about reaching out to the President-elect.
Turkey and the US are NATO allies. However, they have been at odds in recent years over issues like the war in Syria, and Turkey's purchase of Russian missile systems. The latter issue caused US legislators to pressure Trump into sanctioning Turkey.
Also on Tuesday, Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Turkey wanted to resolve the issues that are "poisoning" the relationship between the two countries. Cavusoglu expressed hope that working closely with Biden would help improve ties between the allies.
Leader of the opposition Kemal Kilidaroglu, who fronts the Republican People's Party, was the first Turkish political figure to extend congratulations to the President-elect.
“I would like to congratulate Joe Biden for his election as the 46th President of the United States of America and Kamala Harris as Vice-President. I look forward to strengthening Turkish - American relations and our strategic alliance,” Kilidaroglu tweeted on Saturday after Biden's win was declared.
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