ANKARA: Bush’S Top Security Advisor Due In Turkey On Thurs In A Surp


July 16 2008

Turkey gives greenlight to step in for helping to ease Iran’s
nuclear row

The top security advisor of U.S. President George W. Bush
will pay a surprise visit to Turkey on Thursday, sources told Assistant to the President for National Security
Affairs Stephen Hadley’s visit came a week after the gun attack on
the U.S. Consulate in Istanbul, which left six people dead. Turkish
foreign minister confirmed Hadley’s visit. (UPDATED)

Hadley would meet Turkish President Abdullah Gul and Prime Minister
Tayyip Erdogan on his one day visit, sources added.

Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babacan confirmed Hadley’s visit and the
regional issues will be discussed in his meeting with the American
diplomat on Thursday morning.

The Washington administration condemned the consulate attack and
vowed to continue their joint efforts with Turkey in the struggle
with terrorism. Nobody has claimed responsibility for the attack,
however signs and initial evidence suggest the attack was carried by
al Qaeda, possibly with the help of a local group.

The struggle with terrorism is expected to be discussed during Hadley’s
visit. The visit is also expected to cover various issues from energy
security and the latest situation in the U.S. invasion in Iraq.

A Turkish official said the details of the visit would not be
disclosed. However some suggested one of the most important elements
of Hadley’s visit is likely to be the Iranian issue, the official
added. The controversy over Iran’s nuclear program heightened recently
as Tehran tested mid-rang missiles that could strike Israel.

Another issue that Hadley is likely to raise during his meetings is
the recent warming in the relations between Turkey and Armenia. He
is expected to deliver Washington’s call "to take further steps".

Armenian President Sarzh Sarkisian had invited Gul to watch the
football game between two country’s national teams on September 6
to mark "a new start in relation". Ankara has been evaluating this
invitation, as American officials expressed their expectation of
Gul’s acceptance.