News / Middle East

Assad Reportedly Regrets Syria Downing of Turkish Jet

VOA News
A Turkish newspaper has quoted Syrian President Bashar al-Assad saying he regrets that his forces shot down a Turkish military jet last month.

The Cumhuriyet  newspaper published comments from Mr. Assad Tuesday in which the leader insisted the jet was flying in Syrian airspace that had been used by Israeli planes three times.

Turkey says the jet entered by mistake and had flown back to international airspace before Syria shot it down on June 22.  The paper quoted Mr. Assad saying he would not hesitate to apologize for the attack if the Turkish account were true.

Some Turks say they want more than Assad's apology.

"I don't accept this, they shot the plane down deliberately. Our government must take serious precautions. They must not get away with this. With the help of God, we will retaliate,'' said Istanbul resident Atilla Bayram.

Turkey has increased its defenses along the border with Syria, a move Cumhuriyet  quoted Mr. Assad as saying his country will not match.

Also Tuesday, Human Rights Watch issued a new report accusing the Syrian government of torturing and abusing detainees at 27 facilities across the country.

The group's UK director David Mepham says they conducted more than 200 interviews with victims.

"The kinds of torture that we are talking about are really appalling types of abuse. We've had people put in stress positions, we've had people who have been electrocuted, we've had people burned with acid, we've had people subject to sexual abuse -- terrible crimes have been committed," Mepham said.

  • Black smoke from shelling is seen near Ali bin Abi Taleb mosque in Talbiseh, Homs, Syria, July 2, 2012. (AP/Ugarit News)
  • A general view of the destruction caused during clashes between Syrian rebel fighters and government forces, in Al Qusour neighborhood, Homs, Syria, July 2, 2012.
  • A damaged car is parked near buildings destroyed during clashes between Syrian rebel fighters and government forces, in Al Qusour neighborhood, Homs, Syria, July 2, 2012.
  • Rebel fighters take position at the frontline as they fight against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces in Hamidiyeh, Homs, Syria, July 1, 2012.
  • Rebel fighters pose with their weapons in Homs, Syria, July 1, 2012.
  • A rebel fighter rests next to weapons in a house in Hamidiyeh, Homs, Syria, July 1, 2012.
  • The entrance of a cathedral is seen after fighting between Syrian rebel fighters and President Bashar al-Assad's forces in Hamidiyeh, Homs, Syria, July 1, 2012.
  • A resident walks on a damaged street in Hamidiyeh, Homs, Syria, July 1, 2012.
  • A man looks at the engine of a Syrian rebel vehicle in a street after fighting between Syrian rebel fighters and President Bashar al-Assad's forces in Hamidiyeh, Homs, Syria, July 1, 2012.
  • A cat stands next to a damaged telephone booth in Hamidiyeh, Homs, Syria, July 1, 2012.

The report lists torture sites in the capital, Damascus, as well as in Homs, Idlib, Aleppo, Daraa and Latakia.

Human Rights Watch says the ill-treatment amounts to crimes against humanity.  It urged the United Nations Security Council to refer the situation in Syria to the International Criminal Court.

The head of the U.N. mission in Syria suspended operations on June 16 due to safety risks to the 300 observers there.  The U.N. said attackers targeted the observer team several times with gunfire and bombs.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in a statement late Monday that the Syrian people and the region "cannot afford more atrocities, suffering and chaos."  He also welcomed an international plan for a transitional government in Syria and said he hoped an opposition conference in Cairo will contribute to creating a "meaningful transition."

You May Like

Photogallery Americans Celebrate Thanksgiving With Feasts, Festivities

Holiday traditions include turkey dinners, 'turkey trots,' American-style football and New York parade with giant balloons More

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

With two years left in term, analysts say, president has less to lose by taking conversation on race further More

Video Italian Espresso Expands Into Space

When Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti headed for the ISS, her countrymen worried how she would survive six months drinking only instant coffee More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Mervin
July 04, 2012 2:50 AM
Every nation has got a right to protect its airspace,waterspace and Syria has to protect its own too this time than ever before.


by: Godwin from: Nigeria
July 03, 2012 9:25 AM
Thought Assad was brave and sincere, why must he bring Israel into this? Thought Assad was fighting to maintain Middle East peace, why does he seem to exclude Israel now? Thought Assad was sane, why has he suddenly began to identify with the lines of the mad Arab Spring whose only agenda is the expansion of arab hatred of Israel? You shot down plane that illegally entered your airspace and the world says you're wrong, go ahead and apologize, why say you thought it was Israel's jet? Turkey will now back down; Egypt will jump into negotiation, and the Arab League will call for truce. Can someone see what the crazy idea of the Arab Spring is all about?

In Response

by: susan from: Germany
July 03, 2012 10:32 AM
Relax Godwin... relax... we know!!! the whole world knows... remember Godwin - "wheels within wheels..."


by: Sulemania from: Egypt
July 03, 2012 7:03 AM
CNN reports: "Global disgust over the Syrian regime's purported torture of citizens reached a pinnacle..." hey what about the Proven Torture chambers and rape rooms in Hamas controlled Gaza...??? hmmm??? what about mass executions of "collaborators" - and - "why is it important" you may ask... well Honey, Hamas is the Muslim Brotherhood... that is what they have in store for us (Egyptians) thank you very much USA

In Response

by: hassan from: France
July 03, 2012 10:40 AM
Dear Ms Sulemania, you have no idea how right you are... but you soon will.... Hamas is the Islamic Brotherhood... if you want to predict the future of Egypt... look to Hamas... enjoy the view


by: beancube from: US
July 03, 2012 5:43 AM
Regret? Try send another jet over there and see who would regret? His loyalists will surely use the opportunity to frame him a brutal image as much as they can.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
To Make A Living, Nairobi Street Vendors Face Legal Hurdles, Physical Violencei
X
Lenny Ruvaga
November 27, 2014 7:05 PM
The Nairobi City Council has been accused of brutality in dealing with hawkers in the Central Business District - in order to stop them from illegally selling their wares on the streets. Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video To Make A Living, Nairobi Street Vendors Face Legal Hurdles, Physical Violence

The Nairobi City Council has been accused of brutality in dealing with hawkers in the Central Business District - in order to stop them from illegally selling their wares on the streets. Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

Throughout the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri, President Barack Obama has urged calm, restraint and respect for the rule of law. But the events in Ferguson have prompted him to call — more openly than he has before — for profound changes to end the racism and distrust that he believes still exists between whites and blacks in the United States. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Online Magazine Gets Kids Discussing Big Questions

Teen culture in America is often criticized for being superficial. But an online magazine has been encouraging some teenagers to explore deeper issues, and rewarding their efforts. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky went to this year’s Kidspirit awards ceremony in New York.
Video

Video US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Parade

Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid