Trump and Erdoğan left controversial issues for another time - analyst

The meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his U.S. counterpart Donald Trump this week failed to solve controversial issues, postponing all of the matters which have brought the NATO ally at odds to a time when the circumstances will be more propitious, former Turkish Foreign Minister Yaşar Yakış said.

Despite an expectation that the meeting would give way to harsh discussions, the two leaders kept issues of contention behind closed doors and placed the emphasis on positive subjects, Yakış wrote in his column on Sunday for the Arab News.

The visit  to the United States by Turkey’s strongman on Wednesday arrived amid heightened tensions between the NATO allies following Turkey's incursion into northern Syria targeting U.S.-backed Kurdish forces, a decision by Congress to recognise the Armenian genocide committed by Ottoman forces a century ago and Turkey’s purchase of the Russian S-400 missile systems.

The controversial issues were brushed under the carpet to ease the gloomy atmosphere that prevailed in the two countries, Yakış wrote, highlighting that Trump even went to lengths to express his admiration of Erdoğan.

Erdoğan, for his part, was given an opportunity to explain Turkey’s Kurdish policy and what happened to the infamous letter that Trump had sent to him last month, the article said, pointing to two issues that critics believed would make the meeting a difficult one.

Unless U.S. sources leak to the media embarrassing details of the debates that may have taken place behind the scenes, the article said, the Erdoğan-Trump meeting proved to be a surprisingly calm affair.