The White House said in a statement following a meeting between US President Joe Biden and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that they had discussed Sweden and Finland joining NATO and the Ukraine-Syria crisis.
Biden welcomed Turkey's agreement with the two countries joining NATO.
According to the statement, the two sides also discussed the importance of maintaining stability in the Aegean Sea and Syria.
Biden and Erdogan also stressed on the desire to maintain constructive bilateral relations and close consultation between the US and Turkish governments.
Meanwhile according to Reuters the US administration on Wednesday gave green light to the potential sale of U.S. F-16 fighter jets to Turkey after the meeting between Biden and Erdogan on the sidelines of the NATO summit in Madrid.
The meeting between Biden and Erdogan lasted nearly one hour.
Following the meeting, Celeste Wallander, Assistant Secretary for Defense for International Security Affairs at Pentagon, said that strong Turkish defense capabilities would reinforce NATO's defenses.
"The United States supports Turkey’s modernization of its fighter fleet because that is a contribution to NATO security and therefore American security," Wallander said.
"These plans are in the works. And, they need to be worked through our contracting processes," she added.
In last October, Turkey asked the US administration to purchase 40 Lockheed Martin-made F-16 fighters and around 80 modernization kits.
In March, the State Department wrote a letter to some members of the U.S. Congress who had opposed the sale, saying "appropriate" U.S. defense trade ties with Turkey would serve U.S. interests.
Wallander's comments arrived a day after Ankara lifted a veto of NATO membership for Finland and Sweden.
“Nothing about Turkish requests to the United States was part of this agreement. This is an agreement strictly among the three countries -- Turkey, Finland, Sweden. The United States is not a part of it,” Wallander told reporters.
Before his meeting with Turkish President Erdogan on the sidelines of the NATO summit in Madrid, U.S. President Biden paid tribute to Erdogan's efforts to reach an agreement with the Nordic countries. "I want to particularly thank you for what you did," Biden said.
Turkey, Sweden and Finland ended weeks of diplomatic wrangling and signed a joint memorandum prior to the NATO summit in Madrid, Spain on Wednesday to extend full support against threats to each other’s national security. Acknowledging Turkey’s concerns about the fight against terrorism, Sweden and Finland also agreed to lift arms embargoes on Turkey that they introduced for its military operations against Kurdish groups in Syria.
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