Giuliani's law firm is registered as a foreign agent for Turkey and Giuliani also has close ties with U.S. President Donald Trump, having advised Trump during his campaign a year ago. Trump shared the threat in a meeting with Russia's foreign minister and US ambassador in the Oval Office last week, according to the official, who wasn't authorized to speak publicly on the matter and demanded anonymity. Erdogan recently won a referendum in Turkey that gave him even more power.
Prior to that power grab condemned by democratic leaders worldwide (except Trump), Erdogan lay the foundation for it by detaining approximately 40,000 people he perceived as political dissidents, firing nearly 90,000 civil servants, closing down hundreds of independent media outlets and non-governmental organizations, and arresting an unknown number of journalists, activists, and even members of parliament.
USA military officials have contended the YPG is the only force on the ground capable of forcing ISIS out of Raqqa in the near future.
The YPG fights in a coalition of rebel groups that the U.S. considers its main ally in the Syrian conflict, but Turkish officials see the unit as a terrorist organization linked to an insurgency movement in the south of Turkey. Since 2011, it has been seeking to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad and to stop the two million Syrian Kurdish minority gaining control of a broad band of territory along Turkey's southern frontier.
Erdogan, for his part, was deeply critical of the Kurdish militia in Syria as well as the Democratic Union Party saying "there is no place for the terrorist organizations in the future of our region".
The U.S.is pushing ahead with arming Syrian Kurds after deciding the immediate objective of defeating Islamic State militants outweighs the potential damage to its partnership with Turkey.
Trump meanwhile called to offer congratulations, the White House reported, when Erdogan cemented his autocratic rule in an April referendum on Turkey's constitution. He had not been briefed on it according to the national security advisor.
Erdogan, who meets with Trump at the White House in the afternoon, has been lobbying for the release of Reza Zarrab, who is charged with acting as a go-between to help Iran's revolutionary guards and other Tehran clients evade USA sanctions.
Erdogan met at the White House with President Donald Trump, and both called relations between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies strong. Former President Barack Obama reportedly pondered the Kurdish option for a long time before deciding, in the last week of his tenure, to let Mr. Trump decide.
Others agree. "We know there's going to be a deal".
Turkey believes the Kurds in Syria are linked to the PKK. Human Rights First notes that the White House's invitation to the Turkish president continues a disturbing trend of the Trump administration showcasing its willingness to engage uncritically with human rights violators and authoritarian regimes. The Turkish government asks Zarrab to be given to Turkey since he is a citizen. Erdogan blames last year's failed coup attempt on Gulen, a religious leader who now lives in Pennsylvania, and he has repeatedly called for Gulen to stand trial in Turkey.
Ahead of the meeting, Trump defended his decision to share "facts pertaining to terrorism" and airline safety with Russian Federation, saying in a pair of tweets he has "an absolute right" as president to do so.
Zarrab's prosecution had been brought by Preet Bharara, the former USA attorney for the Southern District of NY, who was sacked in March along with other US attorneys named under President Barrack Obama. "I think it should be done, but we have a lot of work to do with the Turks".
"To the extent that Erdogan looks like he's being flattered, he's going to love that ... to confirm to the Turks that his referendum victory was free and fair, and he's getting a pat on the back from the U.S. president".
Doing so "could be a risk for our sources", said the official, who spoke on condition that neither he nor his country be identified, because he wasn't authorized to discuss the matter publicly.