Erdogan Warns Damascus

The entrance to NATO Headquarters in Brussels

ISTANBUL (Combined Sources)—Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is ratcheting up the pressure on Syria over the shooting down of a Turkish military plane on Friday. Addressing parliament Tuesday, he launched a stinging attack on Syria’s rulers, declaring the country “a clear and present danger” and warning Damascus of the “wrath of Turkey,” reported the Associated Press.

Meanwhile in Brussels, NATO member states ondemned Syria for shooting down the Turkish military jet last Friday.

“We consider this act to be unacceptable and condemn it in the strongest terms,” said NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

He spoke Tuesday at a news conference in Brussels after a meeting of the ambassadors from NATO’s 28 member states. Rasmussen said NATO stands in solidarity with Turkey.

“It is another example of the Syrian authorities disregard for international norms, peace and security and human life,” he said.

Russia said on Tuesday Syria’s shooting down of a Turkish warplane should not be seen as a provocation and warned world powers against using the incident to push for stronger action against Damascus, reported Reuters.

It was Moscow’s first reaction to Friday’s downing of the Turkish military aircraft.

“It is important that what happened is not viewed as a provocation or a premeditated action (by Syria),” Russia’s foreign ministry said in a statement on its website.

Moscow repeated its calls for restraint, warning that any political escalation would be “extremely dangerous” and threaten international efforts to salvage a moribund six-point Syrian peace plan drawn up by U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan.

“Any military element from Syria moving too close to the Turkish border that is deemed a security risk will be seen as a threat and will be a military target,” Erdogan said, announcing new rules of engagement for the Turkish army. “I am warning Syria it shouldn’t make any mistake and test Turkey.”

During his address, Erdogan reiterated that the plane was shot down without warning and over international waters, a claim disputed by Damascus. The Turkish prime minister said Syria will pay a high price, although he emphasized he is not looking for war.
“Turkey knows what it will do very well. We won’t fall into the trap of war provocateurs,” he said. “But we are not a country to sit by after the downing of our plane. We will keep our determination.”

On Monday, Syria’s foreign ministry spokesman Jihad Makdessi told a press conference Monday that the Syrian response to the Turkish military aircraft which blatantly violated Syrian borders was a defensive and sovereign act, and that “Syrian territories, waters and airspace are sacred,” reported the SANA news agency.

Makdessi said that what happened was a blatant violation of Syrian sovereignty according to international law, which is confirmed by facts, information, and that Turkey also admitted to the violation of Syrian airspace and territorial waters.

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12 Comments

  1. Garo said:

    Shut up Erdogan! You are the the provocateurs and aggressors. May be you thought that Syria would not dare take action against your provocation since you are the bully of the area. Are you shocked and upset that the Syrians stood up to you and downed your planes. Stop meddling in your neighbors’ business and respect their sovereignty. Bravo Syria for your readiness and strong resolve to defend yourself against any enemy, it’s about time.

  2. John said:

    This is the new “Gulf of Tonkin” incident. There have been many fake attacks or provocations throughtout history known as false flag operations. I suspect that Turkey sent an F-4 which was converted into a drone to fly into Syrian airspace with the purpose of getting it shot down. Flying airplanes by remote control is very easy nowadays. Today’s military aircraft have GPS and accurate navigation systems and there is no way that this was an accidental penetration of Syrian airspace .The Turks knew exactly what where their plane was and wanted to get it shot down.

    • bigmoustache said:

      i think youre gulf of tonkin comparison is interesting, but it wasnt a drone 2 pilots were shot down and theyre trying to recover bodies.
      but erdogan did pressure obama to use the ‘opening’ as an excuse to invade syria.
      the ppl behind erkenegon tried to do some gulf of tonkin like thing to invite an armenian or greek response

  3. George said:

    Turkey is a puppet country, doing the dirty job of other countries namely Israel

    • bigmoustache said:

      no this one is in their interest too. turkey hasnt always had good relations with the syrian alawite regime. they think if they back a sunni insurgency (turks are sunni too, alawites are a shite sect.) it will be an ally of turkey. as you know turkey and syria are on different sides, with turkey backing US, israel and nato, helping americans invade the region etc.

  4. Christo said:

    Once the US got his back, now he is barking. Keep barking. Not only were the volunteers in artsakh able to defeat your elite bozkurt regiments, but the kurdish freedom fighters. What were your armed forces commanders thinking by their provocation? It’s not the 1400’s anymore.
    KICK SOME turkish A@@ SYRIA.

  5. Armenian said:

    Erdogan is desperated since he knows he failed in his mission to change the Syrian Regime, now after 15 months the West realized they failed in Syria, the USA is going to put the Syrian issue in standby during the election campaigns, and Turkey knows its role is over. They look for an escalation, creating the jet downed story, in order to confirm they still can have a role, that no one wants to give them anymore, but above all it is to recuperate esteem inside Turkey and gain the public opinion . Erdogan wants to cover the defeat with a mask of heroic protector of the country against foreign agression! There has been more than 250 turkish soldiers killed in clash with PKK but official Turkey talk only about 8 soldiers died! Turkey is a paper Tiger now even arabs know that and Turkey is loosing his last cards as Leader of the west in Middle East and as an exemple for the Arab countries democracy. What will they invent else to give themselves a role that could attract the west? there is not anything else left they can invent!

  6. shahe said:

    Dogs bark, however high pitch, and the caravan moves ahead on its journey. Turkey is the Western countries’ scapegoat big time. Whoever from both sides loses, USA and its allies are the winners. This is what I would call high level diplomacy versus diplomatically challenged players.

  7. hagop meldonian said:

    the scale has two plates thanks god their are more then one super power in this world

  8. Alex Postallian said:

    After the drone was shot down,all the mental midgets were saying,where are the pilots.There wasnt any— If there was,the turks,are so stupid,they landed on their head,instead of their feet.Self destruction,you cant blame anybody for being real dumb;but the jerky turkeys will try.

  9. S.Y. said:

    I have say that Erdogan is Turkey’s equivalency of George Bush, period.

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