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    Bush’s top security advisor due in Turkey on Thurs in a surprise visit

    by Zeynep Gurcanli
    16.07.2008 - 10:30 | Son Güncelleme:

    The top security advisor of U.S. President George W. Bush will pay a surprise visit to Turkey on Thursday, sources told hurriyet.com.tr. 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.




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