Vice President Mike Pence will travel to Turkey’s capital Wednesday on behalf of President Donald Trump in hopes “to reach an immediate ceasefire,” according to the White House.
Pence will meet with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in Ankara with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, U.S. National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien and Ambassador James Jeffrey to address the country’s military offensive in northern Syria against U.S.-allied Kurdish fighters.
“The Vice President will voice the United States’ commitment to reach an immediate ceasefire and the conditions for a negotiated settlement,” a press release from the Office of the Vice President reads.
Pence will reiterate the president’s sanctions on the country authorized Monday until the two countries come up with a resolution, the press release states.
Sanctions imposed on Turkey will include a 50% tariff on steel and the termination of a $100 billion trade deal between the two countries, Trump said in a statement.
“The ongoing violence in the region, severely undermines the D-ISIS campaign, endangers civilians and religious minorities, and threatens the security of the entire region. The [a]dministration is resolved to maintain security in the region, the safety of civilians, and the continued detention of ISIS fighters,” the release continues.
More than 150 Kurdish soldiers have died since Turkey launched its “Operation Peace Spring,” the country’s defense military announced on Oct. 10, though Turkey’s Defense Ministry said the number is higher at 174 “terrorists” that it says have been “neutralized,” according to Fox News.
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