Turkey says unrest Syria’s internal affair, won’t allow any intervention
Turkey has said uprising in Syria is its own internal affair and that it will not allow any state to militarily intervene in Syria over regime's brutal military crackdown on eight-month uprising, ruling out any possibility that Turkey will militarily involve in Syria, Today's Zaman reported.
"We won't send [Turkish] soldiers [to Syria], won't intervene and won't allow and create conditions for others to intervene," Bülent Arınç, deputy Prime Minister told a local TV network in Bursa.
Arınç, who is also government spokesman, said any foreign intervention will create divisions not only in Syria but also across the region. He added that incidents in Syria are developing along ethnic lines and sectarian solidarity also plays some role.
Arınç's remarks came at a time when Syria's armed opposition groups asked Turkey to create a buffer zone to shelter anti-regime fighters.
Lieutenant Salem Odeh, a defector from Latakia, told Reuters this week that historic and religious ties with Turkey that go back to the Ottoman Empire mean Syrian President Bashar Assad's opponents - generally wary of outside interference - would accept a Turkish military role.
"I just hope there will be Turkish military intervention. It's better, and they have longstanding blood ties from old times, and they are closer to the East than West," he added.
Citing Israeli security officials, Israeli daily Haaretz reported on Thursday that they believe Turkey is moving toward a military intervention in Syria, in order to create a secure buffer zone for opposition activists. Accordingly, Turkey is expected to set up secure buffer zones on its border with Syria that would allow armed opposition groups to organize against the Syrian regime from bases protected by the Turkish army, according to Haaretz.
Arınç categorically ruled out any discussion among government circles that Turkey is considering military intervention. "There is absolutely no such thing," he underlined. "Some Turkish politicians and some countries are saying that Turkey will intervene in Syria. This is totally wrong. This is impossible, we don't think of it," Arınç said.
Turkish President Abdullah Gül, on an official visit to Britain, said this week that change is inevitable in Syria, but said this should come from within Syria, not through external intervention. Earlier, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan spoke of the fate of defeated dictators from Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini to Muammar Gaddafi, and bluntly told Assad to quit.
Arınç also ruled out that Turkey is directing events in Syria and added that developments in the neighboring country is Syria's internal affair. He urged Syrian government to refrain from using weapons against those who demand rights and demanded that the authority make reforms immediately, go to elections, strengthen democracy, increase political participation, to make all opposition groups be represented in Parliament.
Arınç said Turkey is only urging the Syrian authorities not to use tanks against these demands and that this means "you are fighting against your own people."
Turkish minister's rejection of any intervention stands in contrast to Turkish diplomats' earlier briefing that Turkey may intervene if there is huge influx of Syrian refugees fleeing violence or there is a large-scale massacre.
He said Turkey is closely monitoring Syria and that Turkish government's close relations with Assad family and government is well known, adding that there is now a despotic regime.