Davutoğlu: Assad regime, PKK outdated Cold War structures

Davutoğlu: Assad regime, PKK outdated Cold War structures

FM Ahmet Davutoğlu addressed an audience on Thursday at the George Washington University, discussing the failure of the Assad regime and calling for a “new world order.”

February 10, 2012, Friday/ 17:17:00/ ALİ H. ASLAN

Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has said Syria's Assad regime and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) are "outdated regimes and structures" from the Cold War which will soon be eliminated.

“We wanted him [Assad] to be Syria's Gorbachev, but he chose to be Syria's Milošević,” said Davutoğlu, who gave a speech on Thursday at George Washington University comparing the parallels between the events in Syria and the massacres carried out by the former Serbian leader, Slobodan Milosevic, in Bosnia during the '90s.

Davutoğlu discussed the failure of Assad's regime and called for a “new world order,” pointing out that Turkey wants to be on the “right side” of history.

Davutoğlu also reiterated Turkey's support for the recent political upheaval in the Arab World. Linking the “Arab awakening” with an ongoing, regional confrontation between Cold War structures and new, dynamic forces in society, Davutoğlu said if dictators think they can resist change, they are “delusional.”

Adding that Turkey will not remain indifferent to the massacres in the region, Davutoğlu said, "To show that we support and are in solidarity with the Syrian people, Turkey wants to establish an international platform to discuss the uneasy situation in Syria.” Davutoğlu also said that, with this goal in mind, Turkey is currently reassessing the situation in Syria in cooperation with the Arab League.

He is expected to raise the same issues during official talks with the United States administration on Monday.

Davutoğlu also addressed questions from Kurdish students from Turkey who were present in the audience, saying each society has internal problems. While highlighting that Kurds and Turks will solve it “shoulder to shoulder,” Davutoğlu described the PKK as "an outdated, Cold War structure."

Davutoğlu added that no one in Turkey is in jail because of their identity, taking the opportunity to point out that some suspects are accused of organizing a coup or supporting terrorist activities.

France supports Turkey’s proposal for int’l conference on Syria

After Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu’s statement announcing that Turkey will not remain indifferent to a massacre in its region and will create an international platform to support the Syrian people, France gave a boost to Turkey’s proposal for an international conference on Syria.

In a press briefing held on Thursday, the spokesperson for the French Foreign Ministry, Bernard Valero, said that France welcomed Turkey’s proposal for an international conference on Syria. French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe is in touch with his Turkish counterparts, primarily FM Davutoğlu, and wants to end the current regime in Syria, Valero said. In a speech at George Washington University, Davutoğlu stated that Turkey wants to set up an international platform to find a solution to the Syria crisis. To that end, he is holding consultations with several countries.

Backing Davutoğlu’s statement, Valero emphasized that international observers must be able to act freely in Syria and hold all necessary talks. The UN and the Arab League must facilitate the return of international observers to Syria and make it possible for them to work in an efficient way. Turkish FM Davutoğlu is reported to have discussed Syria via telephone during his visit to Washington. He had a telephone meeting with Catherine Ashton, the European Union High Representative for Foreign Policy. During the meeting Davutoğlu and Ashton discussed the developments in Syria and Ashton invited Davutoğlu to the next meeting of the European Council for Foreign Relations.

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