The President of Turkey, Recep Erdogan, wasted no time in congratulating US presidential election winner Donlad Trump on Wednesday (9 November). According to Reuters, Erdogan was keen to speak to Trump regarding the future of his country's relationship with the US.
According to Ankara, the telephone conversation focused on improving relations – which have not always been good – between the two countries. They also discussed cooperation in terms of combating terrorism, Ankara said.
Turkey is a key player in the region as a member of NATO and bordering both Iraq and Syria which have seen the bulk of US-led coalition intervention. However, it has sometimes struggled for leverage within the west and establishing a better relationship with the US could be hugely beneficial for Ankara.
Trump's election comes as an agreement between Turkey and the EU to stem the flow of migrants into Europe from neighbouring Syria is thought to be on the brink of collapse. Earlier in the week the Austrian government all but pre-empted the deal's collapse as it spoke of the need for a contingency plan with its Balkan neighbours.
The agreement rests on the EU providing free movement to Turkish citizen's across the bulk of it's member states. However member states have been less than keen on signing up to this part of the agreement, while the European Commission published a report yesterday condemning Turkey's record on free speech and democracy.
The report follows tough action taken by the Turkish government against its opposition since a failed coup earlier this year. Erdogan has also asked parliament to consider reintroduction of the death penalty for those involved in the coup.
Ergodan, who said he hoped Trump's victory could lead to "beneficial steps" for the Middle East as well as rights and freedoms, congratulated Trump on his shock victory over Hilary Clinton. Like many other world leaders, he added that Turkey and the US shared common interests and values.