25 Kasım 2011 Cuma

Turkey, France Find Common Ground on Syria

Dorian JONES    Voice of America

Despite strained diplomacy between France and Turkey, the two nations have found mostly common ground in supporting Syrian opposition.

A French objection to Ankara's bid to join the European Union has severely strained ties between the powers, which have been exacerbated by recent policy differences over Libya.

After meeting with his Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoglu in Ankara on Friday, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said both countries agree Syrian President Bashar al Assad's government crackdown is unsustainable and that the time has come for France and Turkey to align Syrian policies.

Juppe said Paris is preparing to submit a resolution to the United Nations Security Council that would condemn Syria and possibly pave the way for increased sanctions. He also said France opposes unilateral intervention in Syria and that any such decision would have to be made by the United Nations.

EU says looks to Turkey to help stabilize Mideast

Today's Zaman

President of the European Parliament has said the European Union is looking to Turkey to help stabilize the region shaken by instability and uprising since the start of this year.
Jerzy Buzek, who is visiting Turkey this week, told Turkish deputies in Parliament on Thursday that he knows from his own experiences that a falling dictatorship is both dangerous and unpredictable, referring to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, whose regime is threatened by eight-month uprising that claimed nearly 4,000 lives. He said across the Eastern Mediterranean, not just in Syria, there are multiple flashpoints and that the 27-nation bloc is looking to Turkey to help stabilize the region.

He said in recent months, Turkey’s leadership has stressed Turkey's support for the struggle for freedom across the North Africa and the Middle East and many in the Middle East regard Turkey as a source of inspiration of a successfully modernising society. He said Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was the first Muslim leader to tell Egypt's Hosni Mubarak to step down.

"Your leaders have travelled to Egypt, Libya and Tunisia to promote the adoption of a constitution that secures secularism. And, more recently, you opened your doors, and hearts, to the Syrian opposition," he said.