February 8, 2012 - 15:18 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu is to fly to Washington Wednesday, February 8 for meetings with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, a spokesman for the Turkish Foreign Ministry told dpa.
The spokesman confirmed that Syria and Iran would figure highly on the agenda but denied that the visit had been arranged specifically to discuss problems with Turkey's eastern neighbours.
“It was arranged back in October and there is no specific agenda for discussion although we expect the situation in the Middle East to figure prominently,” the spokesman added.
Davutoglu would also meet with representatives of the U.S. Congress and with groups representing Turkish residents in the U.S., he said, according to M&C.
The visit comes less than a day after Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan publicly criticized Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for the ongoing massacre of his own people in the city of Homs, warning that he would be called to account for what he has done.
It also comes as the U.S. and the European Union prepare to impose heavy sanctions on Iran in protest at the country's ongoing nuclear programs. Planned sanctions include an embargo on imports of Iranian crude oil and petroleum products.
Turkey, which relies on Iran for around 49 per cent of its crude imports, has refused to impose additional sanctions against Iran unless they are approved by the United Nations.