March 5, 2012 - 22:27 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Turkey will host the second gathering of the “Friends of Syria” group in Istanbul in March to discuss the current situation in Syria, with the participation of foreign ministers representing the group's member countries.
According to Hürriyet Daily News, Turkish Foreign Ministry officials denied reports that French President Nicolas Sarkozy was deliberately not invited to the Istanbul meeting, pointing out that the gathering will take place at the level of foreign ministers.
Turkey has not ruled out inviting French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe to the meeting, despite the political strain between two countries due to the Armenian Genocide denial bill.
“We will still consider inviting Juppe. We won’t rule it out, since this will not be a bilateral meeting, but a multi-party gathering,” diplomatic sources told HDN.
The group's third meeting is planned to convene in France later, probably with the participation of heads of state, if the “Friends of Syria” group decides to do so at Istanbul meeting, the source added. Ankara has not decided if it will participate in the upcoming meeting, which will take place in France, he said.