Saudi, Turkey back Syrian opposition irrespective of talks

A protester places an opposition flag at a checkpoint controlled by Free Syrian Army fighters, during a protest asking for the release of prisoners held in the government jails in al-Fardous neighborhood of Aleppo. (Reuters)

Saudi Arabia’s and Turkey’s foreign ministers said on Sunday that their countries backed Syria’s opposition whether they continued with the Geneva peace talks or opted to discontinue negotiation in a press conference.

Saudi Foreign Minister Aden al-Jubeir said the Syrian opposition went to Geneva to negotiate for transfer of power, new elections and a new Syria.

Turkey’s Foreign Affairs Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said the Syrian opposition was free to leave Geneva talks anytime if terms are not met.

“We share the same position which consists of supporting our Syrian brothers directly or when they take part in international meetings,” Jubeir said in Riyadh at a joint news conference with Cavusoglu.

Turkey’s top diplomat echoed him, saying: “We back demands for a truce and for sending humanitarian aid” to besieged towns in Syria as requested by the opposition.

The two countries are strong backs of the Syrian opposition in contrast with Russia and Iran, who are supporting regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

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In the press conference, Jubeir also said Riyadh supports Ankara’s right to defend itself.

His support to Ankara comes after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned Moscow Saturday that it would be forced to “endure the consequences” if its jets continue to violate Turkish airspace, after Ankara reported a new border infringement incident by a Russian plane.


Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 13:57 - GMT 10:57