Monday, May 13, 2013

Report: Syria blames "murderer and executioner" Erdogan for bombings; Turkey steps back from Syrian war

(Reuters) Syria's information minister has blamed Turkey's government for deadly car bombings near the Syrian border and branded Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan a "murderer", state-run Russian TV company RT reported on Monday.

The bombings took place as prospects appeared to improve for diplomacy to try to end the war in Syria, after Moscow and Washington announced a joint effort to bring government and rebels to an international conference as soon as possible.

"All responsibility for what has happened lies with the Turkish government and Erdogan personally," RT quoted Omran Zubi as saying in an interview with its Arabic-language channel.

"I demand his resignation as a murderer and an executioner. He has no right to build a political career on the blood of the Turkish and Syrian people," RT quoted Zubi as saying.

It said he repeated a denial of Syrian involvement in car bombings that killed 46 people on Saturday in the Turkish border town of Reyhanli. Turkey has accused a group with links to Syrian intelligence of carrying out the attacks.

(Ynet) Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Sunday that Turkey will not fall for a "dirty scenario" and be dragged into the conflict with Syria.

Erdogan was speaking a day after twin car bombs ripped through the Turkish border town of Reyhanli, killing 46 people – an attack that Turkish officials blamed on fighters with links to Assad's administration.

The Turkish prime minister added "we have to maintain our extreme cool-bloodedness in the face of efforts and provocations to drag us into the bloody quagmire in Syria."

"Those who attack Turkey will be held to account sooner or later," he added.

According to officials, nine Turkish citizens believed to be linked to the Syrian intelligence agency, have been detained in connection with the bombings.