Turkey’s president says he can never rule out dialogue and diplomacy with Syria’s Assad

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses a press conference at the end of the G20 summit, at the convention center La Nuvola, Rome, Italy, on Oct. 31, 2021. (AFP Photo)

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan whose country is the backbone of Syria-opposition groups on Friday told the reporters that he can never rule out dialogue and diplomacy with Syria’s Assad. 

Turkey has played as the main supporter of the Syrian opposition groups including the armed forces Since Syria’s civil war broke out in 2011, the country also hosts 3.65 million Syrians who fled the war at home.

Ankara which backs Syrian rebel groups for a decade since the war, its president appeared to comment in a softer tone regarding Syria’s Assad ruling, asked about potential talks with Damascus, Erdogan was quoted as saying diplomacy between states can never be fully severed.

There is a “need to take further steps with Syria,” Erdogan said.

Turkey is backing opposition sides in Syria. And Damascus accuses Ankara of supporting “terrorist” groups in Syria. The Turkish government backs thousands of troops in the area and backs a coalition of armed groups opposed to Assad under the banner of the Syrian National Army (SNA).

Earlier on Aug, 13 Turkey’s foreign minister’s remarks triggered a wide protest in the Syria opposition-controlled territories northwest of the country after the minister urged the opposition to reconcile with Syrian President Bashar Assad.

“Turkey supports a political reconciliation between the Syrian opposition and Assad’s government for the sake of stability” Turkish foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said.

Since 2016, Turkey helped its Syrian allies seize hundreds of kilometers of land and pushed some 30 km deep into the country, mainly targeting the Kurdish groups, which it deems a terrorist organization.

Erdogan promised earlier this year to conduct another military operation into northern Syria.

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