This afternoon the Prime Minister spoke with President Erdogan of Turkey. The leaders discussed the ongoing Turkish operation in Afrin in Syria, with the Prime Minister recognising the right of Turkey to secure its border. The Prime Minister and President Erdogan agreed on the need to protect civilians and avoid a deterioration in the humanitarian situation. The Prime Minister also underlined that the UK would continue to work with Turkey to tackle the threat posed by the PKK more broadly.
The Prime Minister recognised the important role that Turkey is playing in Syria, both in the Counter-Daesh Coalition and in hosting more than 3 million refugees from the conflict. She reiterated her strong belief that the long-term stability of Syria can only be secured through a political settlement and restated the importance of the primacy of the UN-led talks in Geneva to achieve this.
The Prime Minister and President Erdogan welcomed the continuing industrial collaboration between the UK and Turkey, including through the recent Turkish Airlines deal with Airbus. They agreed to continue to discuss ways to enhance the UK’s trade relationship with Turkey as we leave the EU.
The Prime Minister also reaffirmed her strong desire for a resolution to the case against Amnesty International staff.