Morning Brief

Foreign Policy’s flagship daily newsletter with what’s coming up around the world today. Delivered weekdays.

Biden, Erdogan to Hold First Bilateral at NATO Summit

Monday’s meeting presents a contrast to the weekend’s G-7 bonhomie.

By , the newsletter writer at Foreign Policy.
Then-U.S. Vice President Joe Biden meets with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Then-U.S. Vice President Joe Biden meets with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Washington on March 31, 2016. Win McNamee/Getty Images

Here is today’s Foreign Policy brief: U.S. President Joe Biden meets with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the sidelines of the NATO summit, Israel swears in a new government, and the world this week.

If you would like to receive Morning Brief in your inbox every weekday, please sign up here.

Biden Meets Erdogan at NATO Summit

Here is today’s Foreign Policy brief: U.S. President Joe Biden meets with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the sidelines of the NATO summit, Israel swears in a new government, and the world this week.

If you would like to receive Morning Brief in your inbox every weekday, please sign up here.

Biden Meets Erdogan at NATO Summit

Fresh off a friendly G-7 summit, U.S. President Joe Biden reignites a less predictable relationship in Brussels as he meets with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the sidelines of today’s NATO summit.

The thorniest problems in U.S.-Turkey relations predate Biden’s presidency: accusations of a U.S. hand in the attempted 2016 coup, U.S. support for Kurdish rebels in Syria, and the U.S. canceling a Turkish purchase of 100 F-35 fighter jets over Turkey’s refusal to abandon a Russian-made air defense system—an issue that eventually led former U.S. President Donald Trump to impose sanctions on Turkish defense entities.

Biden called Erdogan an “autocrat” on the 2020 campaign trail and was not in a rush to mollify the Turkish president since taking office in January. After Turkish observers perceived Biden’s lack of contact as a snub, the two finally spoke in April, just before Biden’s recognition of the 1915 Armenian genocide. Turkey both disputes the historical record of the event and the use of the term.

Speaking before departing from Ankara, Erdogan said talks would focus on U.S.-Turkey ties and how he and Biden “can leave these troubles behind.” He added, “Turkey is not just any country; it is an allied country.”

U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said the meeting would include a long list of topics: Afghanistan, Libya, humanitarian access in Syria, tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean as well as Russia and China. It’s unclear how long the leaders will get to speak—the meeting is scheduled for 5 p.m. in Brussels and pushes up against a Biden press conference at 6:50 p.m.

Unmanned power. The one-on-one meeting comes as Turkey’s profile as a regional player has grown in recent months. Turkey’s military drone industry is now the world’s fourth largest in the world, and its relatively affordable hardware helped Azerbaijan win its war with Armenia in late 2020. It also turned the tide in Libya, proving pivotal in pushing back the forces of Libyan military leader Khalifa Haftar from Tripoli.

Human rights concerns. Writing in Foreign Policy, Merve Tahiroglu and Eric Edelman call for Biden to tell “Erdogan that an authoritarian Turkey is a threat not just to core U.S. values but also to U.S. security.” The authors lay out three key human rights concerns he should address: the prosecutions of U.S. consular employees in Turkey, the ongoing repression of the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), and Erdogan’s vilification of civil society leaders.

The World This Week

On Monday, June 14, U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas visits Mexico while U.S. Agency for International Development Administrator Samantha Power travels to Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala.

On Tuesday, June 15, Association of Southeast Asian Nations defense ministers meet in Brunei.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in begins a three-day state visit to Spain.

On Wednesday, June 16, Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin hold a bilateral meeting in Geneva, Switzerland.

On Thursday, June 17, former Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo returns to the country following his acquittal by the International Criminal Court.

On Sunday, June 20, Armenia holds early parliamentary elections as Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan attempts to quell unrest over his decision to sign a cease-fire agreement with Azerbaijan in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

France holds the first round of regional elections, with a second round to be held on June 27.

What We’re Following Today

Israel’s new government. Israel’s new government was sworn in on Sunday, officially ending Benjamin Netanyahu’s 12 consecutive years as prime minister. As part of a rotation agreement, Yair Lapid takes on the position of foreign minister while Naftali Bennett assumes the role of prime minister.

In his first speech as Israel’s new leader, Bennett said the country “will maintain full freedom to act” to deny Iran nuclear weapons regardless of whether the 2015 nuclear agreement is revived. He also threatened Hamas with a “wall of iron” if the group mounted attacks against Israelis.

Biden spoke for two hours with Bennett almost immediately after his swearing in, where the two agreed to “consult closely” on Iran, according to a White House readout. Present in the White House readout but absent from Bennett’s version was a pledge from the Biden administration to “work closely with the Israeli government on efforts to advance peace, security, and prosperity for Israelis and Palestinians.”

U.S. officials head south. The Biden administration continues its outreach south of the U.S. border today following the visit of Vice President Kamala Harris to Guatemala and Mexico last week. Mayorkas visits Mexico today, one week after officially rescinding the Trump administration’s policy that allowed border officials to make U.S.-bound asylum-seekers wait in Mexico while their case is adjudicated in the United States. Meanwhile, Power travels to Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala.

The NATO Summit. Leaders from the 30 NATO member states gather in Brussels today as the alliance holds its first summit of the Biden presidency. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has described the summit as a “pivotal moment” for the organization as it plans to shift its focus toward China and climate change. The leaders are also expected to endorse a new cyber defense policy to ensure NATO is “resilient against the increasingly frequent and severe threats … including disruptive ransomware attacks against critical infrastructure,” according to a White House statement.

Keep an Eye On

France-Algeria tensions. Algeria has canceled the media accreditation of French state-owned broadcaster France 24 because of “clear and repeated hostility towards our country and its institutions,” its communications ministry said on Sunday. The move came one day after Algeria held legislative elections with a turnout of roughly 30 percent. France 24 had previously been warned by Algerian authorities over its coverage of the long-running anti-government protests of the Hirak Rif movement.

Brexit issues. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he would “not hesitate” to suspend the Northern Ireland protocol after European leaders and Biden lobbied Johnson on the issue at the G-7 summit. In a television interview, Johnson accused the European Union of creating “all kinds of impediments” to implementation rather than applying the protocol “sensibly.”

The Telegraph reported Johnson was “infuriated” by a suggestion from French President Emmanuel Macron that Northern Ireland and Great Britain were not part of the same country in a conversation about trade barriers. Macron later clarified he was referring to “geographical territory,” after Johnson suggested Macron would see things his way if trade barriers were erected between Paris and Toulouse.

Odds and Ends

A one-hour Netflix streaming session produces 55 grams of carbon dioxide, roughly the same level of emissions as boiling a kettle, a new study form the U.K.-based Carbon Trust found. The study comes as technologies like cryptocurrencies come under scrutiny for carbon-intensive practices. “There was a lot of misinformation and misunderstanding about the carbon impact of video streaming,” said Andie Stephens, the studys lead author. “We therefore wanted to put this into perspective and help to increase the knowledge and understanding of the impact of video streaming.” Although thorough in other ways, the study does not appear to have measured the carbon emitted while struggling to decide what to watch.

Colm Quinn is the newsletter writer at Foreign Policy. Twitter: @colmfquinn

More from Foreign Policy

An illustration of a captain's hat with a 1980s era Pepsi logo and USSR and U.S. flag pins.

The Doomed Voyage of Pepsi’s Soviet Navy

A three-decade dream of communist markets ended in the scrapyard.

Demonstrators with CASA in Action and Service Employees International Union 32BJ march against the Trump administration’s immigration policies in Washington on May 1, 2017.

Unionization Can End America’s Supply Chain Crisis

Allowing workers to organize would protect and empower undocumented immigrants critical to the U.S. economy.

The downtown district of Wilmington, Delaware, is seen on Aug. 19, 2016.

How Delaware Became the World’s Biggest Offshore Haven

Kleptocrats, criminals, and con artists have all parked their illicit gains in the state.