Gülnur Aybet, President Erdoğan's key adviser and International Relations Professor at Yıldız Technical University, met with former U.S. and the European Union officials and prominent American academics at Harvard University on Friday.
Speaking at a high-level roundtable at the Belfer Center, one of the key centers of science and international relations at Harvard Kennedy School of Political Science and a research hub supported by the Turkish Heritage Organization (THO), Aybet discussed the future of Turkey-U.S. relations, regional and global developments with former U.S. and EU officials and leading academics such as Steven E. Miller and Stephen M. Walt.
Aybet was accompanied by the Turkish Consul General in Boston, Ömür Budak, at the meeting.
Among the topics discussed in the meeting were also Turkey's role in Syria, the fight against the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG)'s upcoming independence referendum in northern Iraq.
The referendum set for September 25 will see Iraqis in KRG-controlled areas -- and in a handful of territories disputed between Erbil and Baghdad -- vote whether to declare full independence from Iraq.
Along with Baghdad, Turkey, the U.S., Iran and the U.N. have all spoken out against the poll, saying it will only distract from the ongoing fight against Daesh and further destabilize the region.
Iraq's central government has also threatened to intervene militarily if the vote leads to violence.
KRG's leader, Masoud Barzani, has said a "Yes" vote would not result in an automatic declaration of independence but would simply lead to further negotiations with Baghdad.