De facto region in Syria unacceptable: Davutoglu

Davutoglu said Turkey and several groups in Syria would oppose the idea of an isolated region in the war-torn country

De facto region in Syria unacceptable: Davutoglu

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has said an isolated region in Syria would be objectionable, as a pro-Kurdish terrorist group allegedly prepares to declare an autonomous region in the country.

"The formation of a de facto region and its ensuing isolation from other regions, even before a Syrian parliament is elected and the political system has been established, would be unacceptable to not only Turkey, but also other groups in Syria," Davutoglu said.

It would, however, not mean that Turkey was acting against the rights of any fraction of the Syrian society, especially the Kurdish people, he said.

Democratic Union Party (PYD), a Syrian offshoot of terrorist organization PKK, wrestled control of Syrian border town Ras al-Ayn last week, following days long clashes with the al-Qaida-linked Sunni opposition group al-Nusra Front.

Ankara fears such an autonomous Kurdish region in Syria might encourage PKK terrorists and have a derailing effect on the "peace process", ongoing talks between Turkish intelligence officials and PKK leaders to end terror-related violence that has claimed 40,000 lives in the country.

The Turkish foreign minister said the Syrian regime's bombings of Homs and the military operations it carried in Aleppo have drawn the majority of opposition forces towards this region, which created a power vacuum in Ras al-Ayn and Tal Abyad.

"From the moment the Syrian crisis spills out and starts to affect Turkey's security, Turkey has the right to take any measures it deems necessary to protect its borders," he said.

Turkey is concerned about de facto formations deepening the crisis in the neighboring Syria, Davutoglu said.

"When the relations [between Turkey and Syria] were good, Turkey urged and even put pressure on Bashar al-Assad to grant citizenship rights to Kurds. Therefore, this stance [against a de facto region] does not target our Kurdish brothers there," he said.

EU's Israel decision "correct"

Davutoglu spoke on the recent initiative to resume Israel-Palestine peace talks, which stalled three years ago following Israel's refusal to stop Jewish settlements in Jerusalem.

"We support every step towards peace in the Middle East," Davutoglu said. "But in order for this peace to have a lasting and effective outcome, the principles must be laid down correctly."

Davutoglu said those principles included observing pre-1967 borders, which would mean preserving a land link between East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

"Within this framework, Israeli settlement policy must be stopped and the invasion of the West Bank through settlements must come to an end," he said.

Turkish Foreign Minister warned that any solution that leaves out Gaza would have little feasibility.

Davutoglu also referred to the European Union resolution on Israeli settlements, describing the decision as "correct".

"We expect the EU to maintain this principled stance, because any financial aid to the funds in the occupied territory would ensure the continuation of the invasion,” he said.

"This would come to mean backing the invasion and this is illegitimate."

The EU moved last week to publish guidelines that bar Israeli organizations, groups and companies based on occupied Palestinian territory from receiving EU funding.

"The EU does not recognise Israel's sovereignty over any of the (occupied) territories and does not consider them to be part of Israel's territory," the document said.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 24 Temmuz 2013, 17:05