Turkish FM tells Syrian regime to end oppression-UPDATED

Turkish foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu: "The Geneva conference must take place and a solution must be reached as soon as possible."

Turkish FM tells Syrian regime to end oppression-UPDATED

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Wednesday that measures must be taken immediately to stop what he described as "oppressive policies of the Syrian regime", adding that a planned international conference in Geneva, Switzerland, - dubbed as Geneva-2 - has heightened expectations for a solution to Syria's more than 2-year-old conflict.

"The Geneva conference must take place and a solution must be reached as soon as possible," Davutoglu told a joint press gathering with British Foreign Secretary William Hague following the two top diplomats' bilateral meeting in Istanbul.

Davutoglu recalled a recent meeting of foreign ministers of the "Friends of Syria" group in London, saying the meeting urged the enlargement of the Syrian National Coalition, especially to include the Kurdish groups.

Touching on nuclear negotiations between the Western powers and Iran, Davutoglu said that Turkey supported the talks, adding that Ankara was opposed to nuclear weapons in the region but at the same time it defended the right to peaceful nuclear technology.

"Turkey always has contributed to the ongoing negotiations between P5+1 [five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany] and Iran," Davutoglu said. "Turkey had hosted these talks before and it’s ready to do whatever is needed of us."

He added he would meet Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif on Monday to discuss the issue.

The British foreign secretary, on his part, said that "Turkish people have suffered from terrorism for many years, but this is also one of the countries that does most to address the causes and consequences of terrorism. So, I want to congratulate the Turkish government for its courage and the emerging peace process to bring an end to the 34 year long terrorist campaign of the PKK."

Touching on the Syrian issue, Hague said they would cooperate with other nations on the preparations for the Geneva-2 conference, adding that he would meet with leaders of the Syrian National Coalition on Wednesday.

"Political solution relies on their existence, on their participation and their spread. UK gives practical support to them as does Turkey," Hague said, adding that they were deeply content of the extraordinary generosity of Turkish people in hosting hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees.

DUCHESS OF LUXEMBOURGH VISITS REFUGEES, THANKS TURKEY

Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxembourg expressed her sorrow on the Syrian civil war, saying the conflict deeply influenced her emotionally.

"I am grateful to Turkey, UNICEF and World Food Program (WFP) for their contributions. We did not come here empty-handed, but with two envelopes. One includes $250,000 fund and this will be used for the school which will be built by means of UNICEF. And we will make another $250,000 contribution to distribute electronic food cards by WFP," the Duchess told a press conference with Luxembourg's Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn following a visit to a Syrian refugee camp in Turkey's southern city of Gaziantep.

Stating that they understood the grief of Syrian people, the Duchess said, "we are aware the difficulties they have. Our hope is that an international solution be found."

Last Mod: 21 Kasım 2013, 10:07
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