Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 22 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 22 August 2014

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Read more

FOCUS

Lifting the veil over China's air pollution

Read more

ENCORE!

Tango Takeover in Paris

Read more

WEB NEWS

Calls for ISIS media blackout after execution of James Foley

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Steely resolve of reporters exploited by pared-down employers'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

US judge calls Argentina bond swap offer illegal

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Cécile Duflot ruffles some feathers

Read more

  • US demands Russia withdraw aid convoy from Ukraine

    Read more

  • Besieged by problems, Hollande faces unhappy return from summer holidays

    Read more

  • Central African Republic announces coalition cabinet

    Read more

  • August 22, 1914: The bloodiest day in French military history

    Read more

  • Fed Chair says US job market still hampered by Great Recession

    Read more

  • Gunmen kill scores in Iraqi Sunni mosque attack

    Read more

  • Hamas publicly executes "informers"

    Read more

  • French firebrand leftist to quit party presidency, but not politics

    Read more

  • Fear of Ebola sky-high among Air France workers

    Read more

  • US says Islamic State threat 'beyond anything we've seen'

    Read more

  • Malaysia mourns as remains of MH17 victims arrive home

    Read more

  • Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoglu set to be Erdogan's new PM

    Read more

  • Hollande is ‘nobody’s president’ says former French minister

    Read more

  • Two US Ebola patients leave hospital ‘virus-free’

    Read more

  • Interactive: Relive the Liberation of Paris in WWII

    Read more

Middle east

'Too late' for Syria reforms, French FM says

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-11-18

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu on Friday raised the spectre of civil war in neighbouring Syria. Meanwhile his French counterpart Alain Juppe, in Ankara for talks, said it was now "too late" for Syria's regime to reform.

AFP - Turkey warned Friday that the conflict in Syria risks turning into a civil war, while France's chief diplomat said it was now too late for the Syrian regime to finally implement reforms.

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu pointed to the new attacks by army defectors, "therefore I say there is a risk of transforming into civil war. It is now the right time to stop this massacre, and therefore the Arab initiative is important," he said.

The Arab League has given Syrian President Bashar al-Assad a deadline to halt his "bloody repression" of anti-regime protests or risk sanctions.

"If it is not successful of course there is always a risk of civil war or high level tension in Syria," Davutoglu told AFP.

Up until now the Turkish diplomat said it has been "difficult to call it a civil war because in civil war there are two parties attacking each other.

"But in this case usually civilians are being attacked by the security forces."

The eight-month revolt in Syria has turned increasingly violent, with the Free Syrian Army, made up of army defectors, mounting a daring attack this week against a military intelligence base near the capital and the opposition becoming more militarised.

In Ankara, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said that "it is now too late" for the Syrian regime, which failed to implement necessary reforms.

"We believe that the (Syrian) regime was not willing to implement a reform programme and now it is too late," Juppe said Friday after a meeting with the Turkish parliament's foreign relations committer head, Volkan Bozkir.

On Wednesday, France announced it has recalled its ambassador to Syria after its diplomatic missions there were attacked amid ongoing protests against the Assad regime.

Turkey, once a close ally of Syria, has become increasingly outspoken in its criticism of Assad's regime since an anti-government uprising began in March.

Ankara has already announced a halt to joint oil exploration with Syria and has threatened to cut electricity exports there.

Juppe said both France and Turkey had an "overlapping approach" concerning the Syrian crisis.

Asked if Turkey sharing a 910-kilometer border with Syria should establish a buffer-zone to protect civilians, an idea floated by the Syrian opposition, Juppe said: "It is up to Turkey but we think that such a measure should be decided in accordance with the international community."

The UN Security Council is the only body empowered to impose binding measures, he added.

Speaking with AFP, Davutoglu also said that Turkey was prepared to help the opposition Syrian National Council to develop its relations within Syria and with the international community.

"At this stage it is important that the (opposition council) has access to the international community, the Syrian people, and that it has a solid base as an organisation of the Syrian people," he said.
 

Date created : 2011-11-18

  • SYRIA

    Villages shelled as Syrian conflict escalates

    Read more

  • SYRIA

    Syria's Muslim Brotherhood 'open to Turkish intervention'

    Read more

  • SYRIA

    Arab League confirms suspension of Syria

    Read more

COMMENT(S)