Barack Obama US president calls Erdogan, commends progress against ISIL

He also condoled the Turkish leader on the Dec. 17 attack against off-duty Turkish security personnel in Kayseri.

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US President Barack Obama waves after speaking on counterterrorism in Tampa, Florida on December 6, 2016 play

US President Barack Obama waves after speaking on counterterrorism in Tampa, Florida on December 6, 2016

(AFP/File)
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U.S. President Barack Obama spoke on Wednesday by phone with Turkey’s President Recep Erdogan over the New Year attack and the progress made against ISIL in Iraq and Syria.

The White House, in a readout said the U.S. President expressed his condolences for the many killed and wounded in the horrific terrorist attack against a nightclub in Istanbul, for which ISIL has claimed responsibility.

He also condoled the Turkish leader on the Dec. 17 attack against off-duty Turkish security personnel in Kayseri, for which TAK, a wing of the PKK, had claimed responsibility.

“The two leaders agreed that Turkey and the United States must continue to stand united in order to defeat terrorism.

“President Obama welcomed Turkey’s ongoing efforts to work with regional actors to facilitate a nationwide ceasefire in Syria and a return to political negotiations between the Syrian regime and the opposition.

“President Obama and President Erdogan noted recent progress in the Coalition’s campaign against ISIL in Iraq and Syria, and agreed on the need to continue and deepen coordination between the United States and Turkey.

“Finally, the leaders discussed Cyprus and expressed hope that upcoming diplomatic engagements will result in an agreement to reunify the island as a bizonal, bicommunal federation.”

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