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US, Turkey pledge to ramp up fight against Daesh

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US President Barack Obama and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan have stressed the need for stepping up their fight against the Daesh (ISIL) terrorist group.

Speaking via telephone on Friday, weeks before Obama travels to Turkey for a G20 summit, the two leaders discussed the often difficult cooperation on countering Daesh in Syria, according to the AFP.

Both countries vowed to fight Daesh and similar militant groups in the troubled region.

“The two leaders reaffirmed their shared goal of stepping up military pressure on ISIL and strengthening moderate opposition elements in Syria to create conditions for a negotiated solution to the conflict, including a political transition,” the White House said after the phone conversation.

Obama and Erdogan also stressed the need for an end to the clashes between Ankara and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). Obama “offered condolences as well as US solidarity in the face of the security threats Turkey faces.”

At least 95 people lost their lives in two large explosions that rocked a road junction in the center of Turkey’s capital, Ankara, on October 10.

The Turkish president ordered a special state probe into the bombings, saying intelligence indicated the attack had its origins in Syria.

Ankara has blamed Daesh as the prime suspect behind Turkey’s deadliest attack in modern history, which saw two bombers blow themselves up amidst a crowd of leftist and pro-Kurdish activists at a peace rally.

The deaths of more than 100 peace demonstrators has convulsed Turkey like no other event in its recent history, bringing demonstrators out onto the streets not only in Ankara and Istanbul but in other towns across the country.

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