Turkey to press for implementing deal

Turkey to press for implementing deal

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Turkey to press for implementing deal

‘Turkey will closely follow the implementation this time,’ FM Davutoğlu says.

Turkey said it would insist on the implementation of the Geneva Agreement that envisages a political transition in Syria by establishing a new government with the inclusion of the Syrian opposition, a day before the Syrian National Council’s key meeting in Cairo.

“This agreement is an important first step and a positive one. What is more important is how the elements of this agreement will be reflected in the implementation,” Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu told reporters late June 30 after the meeting in Geneva.

Recalling that the Syrian administration had failed to implement earlier agreements, Davutoğlu said, “Turkey will closely follow the implementation this time.”

The difference between the Geneva Agreement and U.N. Special Envoy Kofi Annan’s six point plan is that the former also stipulates a political transition process including free elections, a pluralistic society, free media and the right to protest apart from a cease-fire and end to violence, Davutoğlu added. “This is not an end but a beginning. Instead of considering this deal an absolute solution, it’s better to call it a new perspective, a new step in the direction of solving the problem.” The foreign minister said Turkey would continue to support the efforts of Kofi Annan to this end.

Davutoğlu said the al-Assad regime was not just a source of instability for his country but also for the entire region, and urged the international community to be aware of this potential risk.

The meeting in Geneva also increases the importance of two key international gatherings on Syria. The first is to be held in Cairo today and tomorrow and will seek the unification of all Syrian oppositional groups under the Syrian National Council. The Arab League, foreign ministers of relevant countries and 200 representatives of the Syrian opposition will be present at the meeting which will likely produce a document titled “National Covenant.” Davutoğlu will attend the meeting as well. After the Cairo meeting, the Friends of the Syrian People group will meet on July 6 in Paris to review developments in the turmoil-hit country.