Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the president of Turkey, took a stroll on Sunday in New York City which he is visiting for the United Nations General Assembly, taking selfies with passerby and even chatting with a female rabbi he met in Central Park.
Erdogan was accompanied by Turkish Ambassador to the United States Hasan Murat Mercan and Ambassador Feridun Sinirlioglu, Turkey's representative to the UN.
Sitting on a bench, on person thanked him for his role in the ongoing Ukraine conflict. "I wanted to thank you for all of the work in Ukraine ... for the grain coming through ... and for helping to make NATO stronger. I’m very proud," he said. "Thank you very much."
He also bumped into Rabbi Rachel Goldenberg who told the Turkish president that she served as a rabbi in Queens. Goldenberg appeared surprised to bump into the Turkish leader on a random walk through the park.
Erdogan begins his election campaign in New York by meeting ordinary Americans and getting selfies and pictures with them lol Among the people he met, there is a female Rabbi, African Americans, Turks, etcOne guy even thanks for the grain dealpic.twitter.com/l48sa0s6EH— Ragıp Soylu (@ragipsoylu) September 18, 2022
"Oh my goodness, really?" Goldenberg asked when she was told the man with the blue blazer was Erdogan. She went on to tell the president that she was a Jewish leader in Queens. He responded with a smile.
Prime Minister Yair Lapid is set to meet with Erdogan at the UN this week, making him the first Israeli premier to meet the president since 2008.
Lapid’s meeting with Erdogan is another step in the ongoing rapprochement between the countries, including an announcement last month that Israel and Turkey would fully re-normalize relations. Lapid visited Ankara earlier this year, as foreign minister, to meet with his counterpart Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu.