Biden says U.S. cooperating with Turkey on evidence against Gulen

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim (R) meets with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden in Ankara, Turkey, August 24, 2016. Mustafa Aktas/Prime Minister's Press Office/Handout via REUTERS

ANKARA (Reuters) - U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said on Wednesday the United States was cooperating with Turkey in evaluating evidence against the Muslim cleric Ankara wants extradited following an attempted coup, but that legal standards must be met.

Speaking during a visit to Ankara, Biden said the United States would continue to cooperate as Turkey brings forward additional information about cleric Fethullah Gulen, blamed by Ankara for orchestrating the July 15 coup attempt.

Biden said the United States had no interest in protecting anyone who had done harm to an ally, and that Washington offered unwavering support to Turkey in the wake of the failed coup.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, who is due to meet Biden later, earlier said Turkey would continue to provide U.S. officials with documents to demand the extradition of Gulen, who has lived in self-imposed exile in the United States since 1999.

Reporting by Jeff Mason; Writing by Nick Tattersall; editing by Patrick Markey