September 12, 2013 - 14:41 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday, Sept 12, he was doubtful that President Bashar al-Assad would fulfill his pledge to put Syria's chemical weapons under international control, and said he was buying time for new "massacres".
"The Assad regime has not lived up to any of its pledges, it has won time for new massacres and continues to do so. We are doubtful that the promises regarding chemical weapons will be met," Erdogan said in a speech in Istanbul, according to Reuters.
Erdogan earlier reiterated that Turkey would take part in any international coalition against Syria, but stopped short of saying whether that would include military action, according to Reuters.
"We have said that we are ready to take part in any kind of coalition and we perceive this as a coalition of volunteers," Erdogan said on Sept 4, shortly before leaving for the Group of 20 meeting in St. Petersburg.
Erdogan said that an intervention against Syria should be aimed at bringing an end to Assad’s rule and cautioned against limited strikes that could leave the regime in place.
“It can’t be a 24 hours hit-and-run. What matters is stopping the bloodshed in Syria and weakening the regime to the point where it gives up,” Erdogan told reporters at a reception in the presidential palace in the capital, Ankara.
“If it is something like the example of Kosovo, the Syrian regime won’t be able to continue,” he said.
Erdogan's chief adviser Yalcin Akdogan has brushed aside concerns that a U.S. strike against Syria could provoke Damascus to attack Turkey. He said that is unlikely because the consequence of attacking a more powerful neighbor would be too great.
“An attack on Turkey would be madness and suicide. That would amount to an attack on a NATO country and things would take a different turn,” Akdogan said.