Syria at dead end, says President Gül
Turkish President Gül (3rd R) and his wife Hayrü nnisa (R) stand beside Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II (C) during a ceremony. AFP photo
Syria has reached a “dead end” that makes change in the Arab republic “inevitable,” Turkish President Abdullah Gül said in an interview yesterday, but added that change should not come through external intervention.
“Syria is now at a dead end, so change is inevitable,” Gül told the daily Guardian in an interview yesterday. “But we don’t believe the right way to create change is through external intervention. The people must make that change. Civil war is not something that anyone would want to see happen. Everything must be done to prevent it. It is very dangerous.”
‘It is quite too late for Assad to make reforms’
Britain has condemned President Bashar al-Assad’s actions as “appalling and unacceptable” and held talks Nov. 21 with representatives of Syrian opposition groups. Gül told the Guardian he had spoken to Assad regularly until a few months ago and advised him at the time to allow free elections, release political prisoners and announce a clear timetable for reforms. “It’s quite too late for that sort of thing now,” he told the newspaper. “He seems to have opted for a different route. And frankly we do not have any more trust in him.”
Meanwhile, gunmen wounded two Turks on Nov. 21 when they opened fire on a convoy of Turkish buses inside Syria carrying pilgrims returning from the hajj in Saudi Arabia, Turkish media reported.
Gül also told the BBC that Turkey was preparing for the worst in neighboring Syria and that “fundamental reforms” were needed.
The Turkish president said his country would not remain indifferent to Syria’s crisis and would support the demands of the Syrian people. In today’s world, authoritarian regimes or one-party states are no longer acceptable in the eyes of either the local citizens or those of people in the rest of the world, Gül said.