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Remarks Prior to a Meeting With President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey and an Exchange With Reporters in Osaka, Japan

June 29, 2019

President Trump. Well, thank you very much. It's my honor to be with a friend of mine, somebody I've become very close to, in many respects, and he's doing a very good job: the President of Turkey.

And we have a meeting largely to do with trade. We're doing more and more business, and we expect to be able to quadruple that business with Turkey. We think it will be great.

They're great craftsmen. They have great product. And we're opening it up. We also do military trading, and they buy a lot of our military equipment.

And it's an honor to be with you, Mr. President. Thank you.

And look at these people, how nice they are. Look at them. They're so easy to deal with. Look at them. [Laughter] Central casting. There's no Hollywood set where you could produce people that look like them. [Laughter]


President Erdogan. Mr. President, first, I would like to express that it's very meaningful for us to come together here at the Osaka summit. And we are currently going towards fulfilling the goal of a $75 billion trade volume.

President Trump. That's right.

President Erdogan. And there are many steps that we need to take within the defense industry area, but more importantly, we have a strategic partnership. And this strategic partnership also encourages us to create solidarity across many areas, and I have full belief that our solidarity will continue throughout the strategic partnership.

Thank you.

President Trump. Thank you very much.

Turkey's Purchase of Russian S-400 Antiaircraft System

Q. Mr. President, what will you do about the S-400s? Is the U.S. going to have to impose sanctions if he takes possession?

President Trump. Well, we're discussing it. We have a complicated situation, because the President was not allowed to buy the Patriot missiles. So when he bought the other ones—the S-200s or 400s—when he bought them, he wanted to do this, but he wasn't allowed by the Obama administration to buy them until after he made a deal to buy other missiles.

So he buys the other missile, and then, all of a sudden, they say, "Well, you can now buy our missile." You don't—you can't do business that way. It's not good. It's not good.

Q. Does that mean is there way—so could you——

President Trump. We're looking at different solutions. It's a problem, there's no question about it. We're looking at different solutions.

But he was prohibited from buying until he said he bought something else. And then, as soon as he buys something else, everybody says, "Okay. You can buy it." You can't do business that way. Turkey has been a friend of ours, and they've done—we've done great things together. We're a big trading partner. We're going to be much bigger. I think the $75 billion is small. I think it's going to be well over $100 billion soon.

You can't treat people that way, like the Obama administration did.

China-U.S. Trade

Q. Will you sanction—[inaudible]?

Q. Will you be discussing the killing of Jamal Khashoggi at the Istanbul Saudi consulate?

President Trump. We're going to have a news conference back at the hotel.

We had a very good meeting with President Xi of China. Excellent. I would say excellent. As good as it was going to be. We discussed a lot of things. And we're right back on track, and we'll see what happens.

But we had a really good meeting. I think President Xi will be putting out a statement—maybe giving a statement—but he'll be putting out a statement shortly, and we will too. I think we'll probably save ours for about 3:30 or so at the hotel. We're going to go to the closing ceremony, and then we'll go over to the hotel, and we'll do a news conference.

Turkey's Purchase of Russian S-400 Antiaircraft System

Q. Will the U.S. impose sanctions against Turkey on S-400 purchase?

President Trump. We're looking at it. But it's a double—it's a two-way street. They wouldn't sell the President—they wouldn't let him—they wouldn't let him buy the missile that he wanted to buy, which is the Patriot. And then, after he buys from somebody else, he says "Now we'll sell you the Patriot."

So I have to tell you, he's a NATO member, he's somebody that I have become friendly with. And you have to treat people fairly. You understand that. You have to treat people fairly.

Q. The ball is in your court though now, Mr. President.

President Trump. And I don't think he was treated fairly.

Q. Will you? You're the one who makes the decision.

President Trump. I don't think he was treated fairly.

Q. Will impose the sanctions?

China-U.S. Trade

President Trump. So we'll see you at the hotel at 3:30, where we'll talk about China. But we had a very, very good meeting with China. I would say, probably, even better than expected. And the negotiations are continuing.

Thank you. Thank you very much.

Q. Does that mean you have a trade deal with China?

Turkey-U.S. Relations

Q. Mr. President, are you going to Turkey in July? Will you be going to Turkey in July, Mr. President?

Q. When are you going to Turkey?

President Trump. I will, at some point, be going to Turkey. I've been invited, and I will be going to Turkey, yes.

Q. This year, Mr. President? Will you go to Turkey this year?

Q. Will you go in July?

President Trump. We haven't set a date. Thank you.

NOTE: The President spoke at 1:11 p.m. at the International Exhibition Center. President Erdogan spoke in Turkish, and his remarks were translated by an interpreter.

Donald J. Trump, Remarks Prior to a Meeting With President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey and an Exchange With Reporters in Osaka, Japan Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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