Syria accuses PM of lying about munition
Members of the Free Syrian Army are seen at a front line in al-Mid area in Aleppo. REUTERS photoSyria has accused Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of “lying” after he said the cargo seized on a Syrian passenger plane intercepted on its way from Moscow carried weapons.
“The Turkish prime minister continues to lie in order to justify his government’s hostile attitude toward Syria,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement. “The plane’s cargo was documented in detail on the bill of loading and the plane did not carry any illegal material or any weapons.”
The Ministry of Information challenged Erdoğan to show the alleged weapons seized. “The plane did not carry ammunition or military equipment and Erdoğan’s comments lack credibility and he must show the equipment and ammunition at least to his people,” it said.
Erdoğan had earlier said the plane carried “equipment and ammunition shipped to the Syrian defense ministry” from a Russian military supplier.
US backs Turkey’s decision
In Washington, U.S. State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland said the Obama administration strongly supported the Turkey’s decision to inspect the plane.
“Any transfer of any military equipment to the Syrian regime at this time is very concerning, and we look forward to hearing more from the Turkish side when they get to the bottom of what they found,” said Nuland. She declined to comment on Turkish reports that the intelligence on the plane’s contents had come from the U.S.