US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew in Fanari, Constantinople (Istanbul), during his official visit to Turkey on Tuesday.
“The Ecumenical Patriarchate is a key partner”, the top US diplomat wrote in a Twitter post.
Honored to meet with His All-Holiness, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, and to visit the Patriarchal Church of St. George today. As leader of the Orthodox world, the Ecumenical Patriarchate is a key partner as we continue to champion religious freedom around the globe.
Honored to meet with His All-Holiness, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, and to visit the Patriarchal Church of St. George today. As leader of the Orthodox world, the Ecumenical Patriarchate is a key partner as we continue to champion religious freedom around the globe. pic.twitter.com/1u96nPZwgV
— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) November 17, 2020
Earlier, Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis had a telephone conversation with the Primate of Orthodoxy, indicative of the importance that Athens attaches to the meeting.
It is one of the stops on the 10-day tour chosen by the head of US diplomacy in Europe and the Middle East to complete his term.
After Turkey, Pompeo will visit Georgia, Jerusalem, and Gulf countries. And all this on the same day that the European foreign ministers finalise the agenda of the EU Summit on December 10, with the first matter being the continuing Turkish delinquency with the latest developments in the Occupied Varosha region in Famagusta.
The US Secretary of State arrived in Turkey yesterday afternoon, at the second stop of his tour in Europe and the Middle East. He is not expected to meet with Turkish officials during his stay in the country, with Ankara expressing its anger at the State Department’s inclusion of the issue of “religious freedoms” on Pompeo’s agenda.
During his visit to Paris yesterday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he had discussed with French President Emanuel Macron Turkey’s “very aggressive” actions and the need to “persuade” Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to abandon this stance. “Macron and I spent a lot of time discussing Turkey’s recent actions and we agreed that they are very aggressive,” he told the French newspaper Le Figaro.