Vice President Joe Biden told the American-Turkish Council’s annual conference that in his opinion only Turks can solve the problem of anti-government protests, which has been the cause of riots across Turkey. He said the U.S. “is concerned and isn’t indifferent” to the outcome of events there.

The annual conference is the most important event sponsored by ATC, held every year in Washington DC. The conference incorporates the whole spectrum of U.S.-Turkish relations, addressing the key issues between the two countries and the region. Participants include U.S. Congress Members, Cabinet Secretaries and other senior Administration officials, the U.S. military, and Turkish political leaders and high-ranking government and military officials. One of Turkey’s deputy prime ministers attended this year’s conference.

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Biden said the U.S. supports free assembly, a free press and nonviolence by government and demonstrators. He warned that Turkey shouldn’t have to choose between democracy and economic progress.

He also said the U.S. and Ankara hold identical views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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