Blinken: Biden's 'genocide' remarks not pin blame on Turkey
U.S. President Joe Biden's recognition of 1915 events as genocide is not seeking to pin blame on Turkey, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said.
Speaking at a virtual event with foreign media, Blinken said Biden's recognition should not have been any surprise because the U.S. president "expressed views that he's held for many, many years, and he's been very clear about that."
"As the president noted, the commemoration of Remembrance Day is to honor the victims, not to assign blame. And of course, the focus that we put on this involved events in the waning days of the Ottoman Empire," Anadolu Agency cited Blinken as saying.
Blinken said it is important to note that Biden had a good conversation with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and there are many, many issues and areas where both nations are working closely.
"Turkey is a critical ally to the United States and NATO. We've partnered on many shared regional interests, global interests," he said.
"We continue to see a strong bilateral relationship, which includes expanded areas of cooperation and effective management, where we have disagreements and like most countries, we do have our disagreements where we owe Turkey the respect of stating our disagreements, clearly, directly, honestly, just as we expect and anticipate the same from Turkey and that's been an important hallmark of our relationship," the U.S. Secretary of State added.