Remarks by President Biden and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of the Republic of Türkiye Before Bilateral Meeting in Vilnius, Lithuania

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July 11, 2023

President Joe Biden met with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Türkiye at the NATO Summit in Vilnius, Lithuania.  President Biden congratulated President Erdoğan on the agreement he reached with Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg to send Sweden’s NATO accession protocol to parliament for ratification. The Presidents discussed efforts to strengthen bilateral cooperation, welcoming the latest round of discussions in the strategic mechanism and exchanging views on defense and economic priorities. They also discussed regional issues of shared interest, including their enduring support for Ukraine and the importance of preserving stability in the Aegean.


PRESIDENT BIDEN:  Mr. President, it’s good to see you again — delighted to be with you.  And, you know, we’re at this historic summit meeting.  We’re resolving a lot of things, I hope.

And you made — you made all the more historic by the agreement you reached yesterday in the admission of Sweden and how you’re going to proceed.  I want to thank you for your diplomacy and your courage to take that on.  And I want to thank you for your leadership, Mr. President.

This summit is reaffirming our commitment to NATO defense with close Allies in NATO, and I hope we can make it even stronger.

So, welcome.

PRESIDENT ERDOĞAN: (As interpreted.)  Mr. President, my dear friend, I would like to, first of all, thank you for congratulating me in the aftermath of my reelection to my current post.  And I’m grateful for the congratulatory messages that you have extended to me.

And within the framework of our strategic mechanism, I think it’s high time for the heads of states to get together for further consultations.  That’s why I believe today’s meeting with you within the margin of the NATO Summit is the first step forward.

Our meetings prior to this were mere warmups, but now we are initiating a new process.  This new process is a process of five years.

And now you are getting prepared for the forthcoming elections.  And with the forthcoming elections, I would like to take this opportunity to also wish you the best of luck.

PRESIDENT BIDEN:  Thank you very much.


PRESIDENT BIDEN:  And we look forward to meeting with you the next five years.  (Laughter.)

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