Erdogan on Syria: Political dialogue can never be cut off

Erdogan on Syria: Political dialogue can never be cut off
Update: 22 August 2022 20:38
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Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey needs to take further steps in dialogue and diplomacy with Syria. Erdogan also blamed the US for "feeding terrorism" in Syria.

Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan said he can never rule out talks with the Syrian regime in his routine mid-air press briefing with select journalists coming back from Ukraine.

Erdogan, using a softer tone over the matter, said diplomacy between states can never be fully severed. 

“We need to secure advanced steps with Syria. By taking these steps, we will disrupt many games in this part of the Islamic world with our neighbors," he said.

Erdogan also blamed the US for "feeding terrorism" in Northern Syria, saying that the US is currently piling up thousands of trucks of weapons, ammunition, vehicles and equipment in the region.

On August 11, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu revealed that he recently had a brief chat with his Syrian counterpart.

"I had a short conversation with the Syrian Foreign Minister during the Non-Alligned Movement summit in Belgrade," he said.

He also said Turkey must reconcile the Syrian administration with the opposition.

Since 2016, Turkey helped Syrian opposition seize hundreds of kilometres of land, targeting the Kurdish YPG militia, which it deems a terrorist organisation.

In reaction to Cavusoglu’s words, the opposition took to the streets in Turkish controlled areas of Northern Syria, saying they will never make peace with the Syrian regime, throwing rocks at Turkish armored vehicles and burning Turkish flags. 

Last week, Turkiye newspaper, known to be close to Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, published two reports about a revival of Syria-Turkey relations claiming Erdogan and Syrian leader Bashar Al Assad could soon talk over the phone. 

The newspaper also said Syria had five demands to resume talks with Turkey. 

According to Turkiye, the Syrian regime demands the transfer of several customs, full control over the M4 highway between Aleppo and Hasakah. Damascus also demands from Ankara to help ease the US and EU sanctions over businessmen and companies that support the Assad family, the newspaper said.