Turkey- In an interview published Friday in the Turkish newspaper Aydinlik, Syria`s President Basher al-Assad denied Turkish accusations that Syria was aiding militants from the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, also known by its Kurdish acronym PKK, an armed separatist group in Turkey’s southeast.
Syria does not support the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, President al-Assad declared in the interview. He said that the Turkish government brought these charges because it itself supported groups of criminals in Syria.
“The Turkish government is circulating these claims to legitimize its support to armed groups” fighting the government, President al-Assad said, according to the newspaper.
President al-Assad said that Damascus continued the investigation of circumstances of how a Syrian mortar shell fell on Turkish territory. This investigation would benefit from cooperation with Turkey which sadly is not the case, the Syrian president said.
Al-Assad also considers the Syrian and Turkish people to be fraternal nations and believes that problems in relations between the two countries are caused by the position of Ankara which supports the Syrian opposition and calls for resignation of the legitimate government, according to the newspaper.
Press reports said Friday that President al-Assad sought to calm tensions with Ankara, describing Syria and Turkey as brothers in the interview published at the newspaper. He insisted Turkey had ''no reason to go to war'' over the cross-border clashes.
''We should work on this issue together,'' President al-Assad told the Turkish newspaper.
''In times like this, countries should correct their mistakes by talking to each other.'' President al-Assad added.
In part II of the interview with the Turkish newspaper, published Saturday, President al-Assad said that
"a great number of Turks have joined the terrorists groups which have been fighting against the Syrian people”. President added, “Syria does not support the PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party), pointing out that the Turkish Government had fired such allegations to legitimize its support to the armed groups”.
“When tensions break out with the Turkish Government, Ankara has operated with the armed groups, which have been committing the crimes in Syria, starting to bring out such claims in order to receive support for Turkish public opinion for these groups”.
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