Obama Promises Turkish-Iraq-Kurdish Summit

In 2001, most opinion polls revealed that over 70% of Turkish people had a favorable view towards the United States. Today the figure is about 9%. Barack Obama promised, if elected, to restore American relations with Turkey. As step one in achieving that goal, he is urging a Turkish-Iraq-Kurdish summit meeting which would deal with issues created by the outlawed Kurdish Worker’s Party(PKK) which conducts military action against Turkey from bases in Iraq. The Obama statement recognized the economic importance of Turkey and Iraq to one another and by ending the PKK threat it would facilitate economic development in the region.

Hopefully, a President Obama would reach out to Iran which also is concerned about PKK activities and urge its presence in such a summit meeting. This might be the first step in persuading Iran there are economic benefits in working cooperatively with a United States that desires stability in the region.

Obama has also promised to work with Cyprus and Turkey to deal with the problem of a divided island. A solution would improve Turkish-Greek relations.