PM Erdoğan has record-long meeting with military chief
In this file photo dated September 2011, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (R) and Chief of General Staff Gen. Necdet Özel shakes hands after a weekly meeting. (Photo: AA)
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Chief of General Staff Gen. Necdet Özel held their weekly meeting on Tuesday, which lasted more than three hours.
The two usually hold a weekly meeting on Thursdays, but move it up two days earlier as Gen. Özel will be traveling abroad later in the week. The meeting was held at Erdoğan's residence and lasted three hours and 10 minutes, the longest tete-a-tete the two have had.
No official statement was made with regards to the content of the meeting, but many speculate the Syrian crisis might have been discussed as the meeting comes two days after the National Security Council (MGK) convened. At the MGK meeting Turkey's top political leaders and military commanders called for full implementation of a UN peace plan for Syria and said a democratic transition process should immediately take effect in the conflict-hit country.
The UN plan, drafted by UN-Arab League joint envoy for Syria Kofi Annan, seeks talks between President Bashar al-Assad and the opposition forces that are trying to topple him. Turkey, a fierce critic of Assad, suspects the Syrian regime of using the plan to gain more time.