Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale met Turkish Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Onal at the State Department today to discuss the U.S-Turkish bilateral relationship and regional affairs. They welcomed the November 1 start of joint patrols between U.S. and Turkish forces west of the Euphrates River along the demarcation line outside of Manbij. These joint patrols are part of the roadmap endorsed June 4 by Secretary Pompeo and Foreign Minister Cavusoglu and are designed to help maintain calm and support stability in Manbij. Under Secretary Hale expressed concerns about recent events in northeast Syria, called for a halt of exchanges of fire in the area, and underscored the need for stability in northeast Syria to ensure the enduring defeat of ISIS. Under Secretary Hale welcomed the return of Pastor Andrew Brunson to the United States and urged the release of other unjustly detained U.S. citizens, including NASA physicist Serkan Golge and U.S. Mission Turkey local staff. Both sides presented recommendations for ways to broaden and deepen bilateral cooperation.