Washington (CNN)Throughout a assembly within the Oval Space of job Wednesday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan pulled out an iPad to uncover a miniature neighborhood of Republican senators and President Donald Trump a propaganda video casting the Kurds in a harmful gentle, in keeping with a GOP source wide awake of the disadvantage.
The source called the video, which used to be first reported
by Axios, “surreal” and “straight propaganda.”
GOP Sens. Lindsey Graham, Jim Risch, Ted Cruz, Joni Ernst and Rick Scott all attended the candid and at events stressful assembly, which lasted about Ninety minutes. Reporters had been temporarily invited in to survey the lawmakers elevate their foreign policy concerns with Erdogan — particularly addressing the sale of Russian weapons to Turkey and Turkey’s conflicts with the Kurds.
The senators “did different the speaking” with Trump “playing website online visitors cop,” the GOP source acknowledged. The senators warned that Turkey will face US sanctions unless it reverses path on the acquisition of a Russian missile defense blueprint, a senior administration official and two sources wide awake of the topic acknowledged.
Trump invited the five senators — all of whom were vocal critics’ of Turkey’s acquisition of the S-400 blueprint — in expose to uncover Erdoğan the comprehensive opposition he faces, a senior administration official acknowledged. It used to be also in phase an effort by to uncover Erdoğan that his hands are tied on the sanctions disadvantage.
“We seen it as more marvelous cop, execrable cop,” one source acknowledged of the assembly, noting the neighborhood showed Erdoğan that Trump’s “hands had been tied” for the explanation that Senate is now now not going to give Turkey F-35s within the occasion that they form now now not regain rid of the S-400.
“To the extent that Erdoğan understands now the leverage and strength that the Senate has on this … that used to be handy,” the administration official acknowledged.
In expose to uncover that unified entrance, national safety adviser Robert O’Brien held a call with the five Republican senators sooner than the assembly in expose to regain them on the same page about specializing within the S-400 disadvantage, two administration officials and a Senate Republican source acknowledged.
Trump also warned Erdoğan in his letter that week that sanctions had been coming if Turkey deploys the S-400 blueprint, nonetheless a source wide awake of the assembly acknowledged the senators had been more forthright on Wednesday.
The probability of sanctions used to be the focal point of the Oval Space of job assembly, nonetheless the Republican senators also delivered candid and as soon as shortly heated criticisms to Erdoğan about other factors.
Graham, who has been a vocal critic of Turkey’s invasion of Syria, at one point engaged in a heated help-and-forth with Erdoğan over the topic and the fate of the US’s Kurdish allies, the senior administration official and two sources familiar acknowledged.
Graham “used to be rather aggressive on Syria,” one source acknowledged.
Scott also raised extreme questions about Turkey’s ongoing membership in NATO as it grows more and more cozier with Russia.
Cruz acknowledged in an announcement that he pushed Erdoğan on the S-400 blueprint and the assault on the Kurds.
“I truly admire the least bit times described Turkey as an ally — a deeply problematic ally, nonetheless an ally on the opposite hand, in a actually shrinking situation of the world. I went to the White House nowadays to uncover President Erdoğan precisely that,” he acknowledged, calling Turkish assaults on Kurds “entirely unacceptable” and announcing he “made particular” to the Turkish chief that the US is now now not going to promote F-35 jets to Turkey “so long as as Turkey continues to ranking or deploy the S-400 air defense blueprint from Russia.”
Trump invited these senators understanding they would perchance well be candid in their views. He wished a frank dialogue and wished the lawmakers to air their concerns, one source wide awake of the conversations acknowledged, in conjunction with that Trump believes or now now not it’s crucial to retract a particular relationship with Erdoğan and is now now not concerned that other US officials, enjoy these lawmakers, truly feel in a different way.
A senior administration official acknowledged Trump first raised the opportunity of fascinating the senators to fulfill Erdoğan closing week. A source wide awake of the topic acknowledged it gave Trump a probability to steer particular of at the moment confronting Erdoğan on the S-400 disadvantage whereas tranquil elevating the worries in an official ability.