Annan briefs Turkey on Syria peace plan
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Moroccan Col Ahmed Himmiche (C-R), head of the UN observers’ advance team, speaks with Free Syrian Army commander Abu Kutaiba (C-L) in Homs. AFP PhotoU.N.-Arab League joint envoy on Syria Kofi Annan called Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu late May 2 to brief him on recent developments in the peace plan.
Davutoğlu conveyed Turkey’s concerns on increasing violence against civilians in Syria, despite the monitoring mission for Annan’s peace plan, diplomatic sources said. The minister stressed the importance of the full implementation of Annan’s peace plan by Syrian administration. “The Annan plan is not working, the massacres are continuing,” Ömer Çelik, deputy chairman of Justice and Development Party (AKP) said speaking in a televised interview yesterday. Despite the presence of observers in Syria, the massacres continue, Çelik said. The Annan plan has failed, and the international community needs to take action without delay, he said, stressing that Turkey would “in no way” act alone. Çelik underlined that China and Russia no longer have a justification for a veto at the Security Council.
Turkey sees the creation of “humanitarian corridors” as the most viable option to alleviate the crisis, Çelik said, rejecting the “buffer zone” suggestions as an option that would “ghettoize” Syria and spark a civil war. Al-Assad staying in power was not an option, Çelik said. “Assad will go. This regime is now illegitimate,” he said. Çelik ruled out Turkey acting unilaterally. Asked what scenario might occur if Syria violated the Turkish border again, Çelik said: “The border is a matter of honor. That honor will be defended.”