Nato chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen has begun a two day visit to Turkey – the country which initially blocked his appointment to the military alliance’s hot seat.
Arriving in Ankara from Greece, Rasmussen held talks with Turkish President Abdullah Gul. The Secretary General has called for improved relations between Greece and Turkey to help smooth NATO missions in which both countries serve, most notably Afghanistan. It was a message he carried to Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayip Erdogan as the two sat down for a fast-breaking dinner to mark the Islamic festival of Ramadan. The visit is significant because of Turkey’s objections to Rasmussen’s appointment last April. That stemmed from anger at the Danish leader’s handling of a row in 2006 over cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad that offended many Muslims. The NATO chief also said Turkey should increase troop numbers in Afghanistan and play a bigger part in the fight against terrorism.