Istanbul, March 18 () - Senior Turkish and U.S. diplomats have discussed ways to enhance cooperation in the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), the U.S. Embassy to Ankara has stated, reiterating that Washington does not foresee a role for Bashar al-Assad in the future of Syria.
U.S. President Barack Obama’s special envoy General John Allen and his deputy Ambassador Brett McGurk were in Ankara to hold talks with Turkish Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioğlu, read the statement issued by the embassy.
Describing the talks as constructive, the statement quoted General Allen as welcoming Turkey’s support in training vetted Syrian opposition, noting recent Turkish actions to increase border security and restrict the flow of foreign fighters, and thanking Turkey for its generosity in hosting Syrian and Iraqi refugees.
“General Allen reiterated that the United States’ position on al-Assad has not changed. The United States believes that he has lost all legitimacy to govern, that conditions in Syria under his rule have led to the rise of ISIL and other terrorist groups, and that we continue to seek a negotiated political outcome to the Syrian conflict that does not in the end include al-Assad” it added.
General Allen, Ambassador McGurk and Undersecretary Sinirlioğlu discussed a number of ways in which the United States and Turkey can enhance cooperation on counter-ISIL efforts and committed to further dialogue on those issues, the statement said.