AFP / MILLIYET  – 10.2.2013 – ANKARA:  US President Barack Obama said he believes Turkey’s efforts to try to resolve the three-decade conflict with Kurdish rebels will lead to “real progress,” according to remarks published in a Turkish newspaper on Sunday.

“I applaud Prime Minister (Recep Tayyip) Erdogan’s efforts to seek a peaceful resolution to a struggle that has caused so much pain and sorrow,” he told the Milliyet newspaper, referring to negotiations launched last year between Ankara and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). “I believe that the proactive measures that the Turkish government is undertaking can lead to real progress,” he said, according to a copy of Obama’s comments in English provided by the newspaper.

“A peaceful resolution will not only improve the lives of millions of citizens living in the violence-torn regions of southeast Turkey it will mean more security and prosperity for people across Turkey for generations to come,” Obama wrote in response to questions from Milliyet. He said the United States will continue to support Turkey in its “desire to close this terrible chapter and begin a new chapter of peace and security”.