POLITICS > Turkish PM engages in an all-out bashing over Syria crisis


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Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said the Israeli attacks were a "golden opportunity" for his one-time ally President Bashar al-Assad to cover up massacres of opponents. AA photo

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said the Israeli attacks were a "golden opportunity" for his one-time ally President Bashar al-Assad to cover up massacres of opponents. AA photo

Both Israel and its arch-foe Iran received their share of blunt criticism from Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan May 7 for their policies regarding Syria, as he broke his silence over Israeli strikes in Syria.

In his overall criticism of “international policy” on Syria, which he “damned,” Erdoğan singled out the two regional rivals. He also lamented that the U.N. Security Council would suffer the consequences if it continued to remain silent in the face of atrocities committed in Syria.

“The air strike that Israel carried out on Damascus is completely unacceptable. There is no rationale, no pretext that can excuse this operation,” Erdoğan said, addressing a parliamentary meeting of his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

‘Golden plate to Assad’

“These attacks are chances, opportunities offered on a golden plate to al-Assad and to the illegitimate Syrian regime. Using the Israel attack as an excuse, he is trying to cover up the genocide in Banias,” Erdoğan said, referring to a Syrian coastal town where anti-Assad activists said at least 62 people were killed by government fighters over the weekend.

“Al-Assad, who has not sweated a single drop against Israel for the [occupation of the] Golan Heights is now using the Israeli attack to cover up the Banias massacre,” he said. Israeli officials said the air strikes on May 3 and May 5 were not intended to influence its neighbor’s civil war, but only at stopping Iranian missiles reaching Lebanese Hezbollah militants for possible use against the country. Erdoğan likened the mass killings of civilians in the town of Banias to the Battle of Karbala. He also likened the perpetrators to Caliph Yazid.

After the Hama massacre in 1982, Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini had distanced himself from then-Syrian President Hafez al-Assad and accepted him into his office only months after the massacre, Erdoğan said. “Fine, now I ask those who are now running the same office: I wonder how long you will turn a blind eye to this massacre? The organizations that lend support to Syria’s illegitimate regime, the states that back Syria’s illegitimate regime, particularly the U.N. and the [U.N.] Security Council, will suffer the consequences,” he said.

Expressing outrage at the killing of children by the regime, which he said he had seen pictures of, Erdoğan blasted the international community for its failure to act.

“I wonder how long you will turn a blind eye to this massacre,” Erdoğan said. “Damn your international policies!” he yelled, while urging the U.N. Security Council to “urgently convene” over the Banias killings, which have sent residents fleeing. Over the weekend, Erdoğan had called the Syrian president a “butcher,” in his harshest attack in recent months.


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Notice on comments

mara mcglothin

5/8/2013 3:33:24 PM

ILKER HOw many Muslim countries has the USA tried to support and help since 9/11. Enough is enough! Let the rest of the ME help if they so choose. Time for us to take care of ourselves. You can't have it both ways. Even you should be able to understand that our aid has NOT helped in the past. Why should it be of help now? YOu are once again correct JRC.

Hakan Salci

5/7/2013 11:46:58 PM

RTE is like a spoilt child throwing a tantrum for not being able to get what he wants; his dictatorial and absolute rule in Turkey means diddly squat in the rest of the World and being the Sultan that he thinks he is our buddy is getting really frustrated..aww, what a shame. The radical lunatics he is financing and arming in Syria will 1 day turn their attention to Turkey and a 2nd PKK type nightmare will emerge, mark my words. He has no idea of what the consequences of his actions will lead to.

Çılgın Kanarya

5/7/2013 11:13:34 PM

Erdoǧan is yelling at the wrong people. If he really is so hopping mad about this, then the first person he should be yelling at is Sergei Lavrov next time he's in town for 'peace' talks, followed by picking up the phone to berate Putin. Forget Iran as Syria's main backer, it is RUSSIA, more than any other country, who has ensured that the UN is impotent on this matter since the very beginning with their veto powers. Come on PM, where is your bravado & yelling when it comes to the Russians?

Sami Soulima

5/7/2013 10:20:57 PM

I am happy to live in the Israeli Occupied Golan because we are safe from the crazy massacres that are going on by the butcher Assad. We even send apples and supplies to our brothers in Syria who have nothing. I am not happy however that Israel bombs our homeland with the excuse that it is keeping weapons from Hizballah. These weapons should be secured and given to the rebels who are freedom fighters. Israel should mind their own business.


5/7/2013 9:00:34 PM

Erdogan just work on a military nuclear program in order to silence these two trouble making countries for good and than peace will come to the Middle East by itself.

ilker avni

5/7/2013 8:45:07 PM

@ Mara Your beloved United States is aiding Assad with its arms embargo,surely even you can understand that,after all its the almighty United States who claim they stand for Liberty freedom and demorcracy or dont Islamic countries count since 9/11.?


5/7/2013 7:53:30 PM

Turkey has often sent troops into Northern Iraq to "defend" itself, and is now supporting the rebels in Syria mostly to defend itself against extremist elements and Syrian Kurds ending up on Turkey's border. His rantings are those of someone who is angry but unable to form a coherent argument to explain why. He throws insults in all directions, in the manner of a child throwing its toys out of its pram.

mistique holland

5/7/2013 7:47:01 PM

@mara, no Israël is...they think they can get away with everything and when the ME will strike back they will start crying. They have blackmailed us in Europe for over 68 years...whilst they create war victims with their own hands every day....in Israël, Palestine, Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt and were ever the Mossad strikes...What would you say when Erdogan should have done this? Isrraël does not need to defend as they were NOT attacked...they always provoke...


5/7/2013 7:16:15 PM

So the recipient of the Gaddafi peace prize is cursing again Israel for daring to protect itself from Iranian missles making their way to Hizzballah. Erdogan is a disgrace for Turkey.

Tekion Particle

5/7/2013 7:03:17 PM

Continued. So keep locking up the best personal so you are left with the yes men as you have always wanted. You want to intervene to save Sunnis but you cannot because the yes men you employed have not got a clue and you are too proud to let the capable officers out and reinstate them. Irony, isn’t it?
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