News / Middle East

Turkey PM Warns Syria Has Used Chemical Weapons

Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan (2013 photo)Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan (2013 photo)
x
Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan (2013 photo)
Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan (2013 photo)
Reuters
Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey would support a U.S.-enforced no-fly zone in Syria and warned that Damascus crossed President Barack Obama's “red line'' on chemical weapons use long ago, according to an NBC News interview released Thursday.
 
A no-fly zone to prohibit Syrian military aircraft from hitting rebel targets has been mentioned by American lawmakers as one option the United States could use to put pressure on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
 
“Right from the beginning ... we would say 'Yes,'' Erdogan said when asked if Turkey, a NATO member that shares its longest border with Syria, would support such action, according to an NBC.com report.
 
But setting up a no-fly zone would require U.S. air strikes, and possibly forces sent into Syria, at the risk of casualties. There is little chance the United States would undertake that  anytime soon, U.S. security officials say.
 
Still, Erdogan's comments could add pressure on Washington to take action in a two-year revolt that has killed 70,000 people and further destabilized a volatile region.
 
Erdogan also said Assad has fired missiles with chemical weapons at his opponents, crossing Obama's so-called red line a “long time ago.''
 
Obama said in August he views the use of chemical weapons in Syria as a “red line.'' But, wary of the false intelligence used to justify the 2003 war in Iraq, the United States says it wants proof before taking any action.
 
“It is clear that the regime has used chemical weapons and missiles. They used about 200 missiles, according to our intelligence,'' Erdogan said in the interview with the U.S. television news outlet.
 
The Turkish leader did not make clear whether Turkey believed that all 200 missiles carried chemical weapons and said his government had not determined whether sarin gas was used.
 
“There are different sizes missiles. And then there are deaths caused by these missiles. And there are burns, you know, serious burns and chemical reactions,'' Erdogan told the network when asked what evidence Turkey had.
 
“And there are patients who are brought to our hospitals who were wounded by these chemical weapons,'' he added.
 
“You can see who is affected by chemical missiles by their burns,'' said Erdogan, who told NBC that Turkey would share intelligence with the United Nations Security Council.
 
Obama is set to meet with Erdogan in Washington on May 16.
 
Assad's forces and opposing rebels have accused each other of using chemical weapons. Erdogan told NBC he doubted Assad's opponents have used such weapons because they lacked access to them.
 
Turkey's state-run Anatolian news agency said earlier on Thursday that the country has sent eight experts to the border with Syria to test wounded victims of the country's civil war for traces of chemical and biological weapons.

You May Like

Brutality Eroding IS Financial Support

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper says IS's penchant for publicizing beheadings, other brutal forms of punishment hurts group’s bottom line More

Studies: Climate Change a Factor in Disasters in Syria, California

The studies point to the possibility of clear and present dangers from a threat often considered to be far in the future More

Video Afghan Refugees Complain of Harassment in Pakistan

Afghan officials and human rights organizations assert that Pakistani authorities are using deadly attack at school in Peshawar as pretext to push out Afghan refugees More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Igor from: Russia
May 09, 2013 11:26 PM
Hey Tayyip Erdogan, Shut up your mouth and stop spreading any futher lies. You have no proof! If you have any, it is your products!Do you think people can believe in your words when you are supporting terrorist groups and helping to turn the whole Syria into hell? You are only the betrayer of Syrians.

by: MUSTAFA from: PAKISTAN
May 09, 2013 10:58 PM
Money has power to speak, this is truth. He cannot increase the standard of living of his own country man and then he speak for syrian peoples for what. Any body can guess.

by: Dr. Elizabeth P. from: UK
May 09, 2013 10:20 PM
Assad will stay away from confrontation with Israel at all costs... he knows how closely they monitor him and their technological capabilities are almost magical.... whatever the Hizbullah clown may claim, Assad will use any excuse to avoid Israel's wrath... but with Turkey, Assad will unleash a devastating attack... chemicals not excluded...

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Kerry Seeks Assurances of Russian Non-Interference in Ukrainei
X
March 03, 2015 3:11 AM
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has told his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, that his country could face further consequences to what he called its “already strained economy” if Moscow does not fully comply with a cease-fire in Ukraine. The two met, on Monday, on the sidelines of a U.N. Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva, where Kerry outlined human rights violations in Russian-annexed Crimea and eastern Ukraine. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports from Geneva.
Video

Video Kerry Seeks Assurances of Russian Non-Interference in Ukraine

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has told his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, that his country could face further consequences to what he called its “already strained economy” if Moscow does not fully comply with a cease-fire in Ukraine. The two met, on Monday, on the sidelines of a U.N. Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva, where Kerry outlined human rights violations in Russian-annexed Crimea and eastern Ukraine. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports from Geneva.
Video

Video Smartphones May Help in Diagnosing HIV

Diagnosing infections such as HIV requires expensive clinical tests, making the procedure too costly for many poor patients or those living in remote areas. But a new technology called lab-on-a-chip may make the tests more accessible to many. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Refugees Complain of Harassment in Pakistan

Afghan officials have expressed concern over reports of a crackdown on Afghan refugees in Pakistan following the Peshawar school attack in December. Reports of mass arrests and police harassment coupled with fear of an uncertain future are making life difficult for a population that fled its homeland to escape war. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports from Islamabad.
Video

Video Ukrainian Volunteers Prepare to Defend Mariupol

Despite the ongoing ceasefire in Ukraine, soldiers in the city of Mariupol fear that pro-Russian separatists may be getting ready to attack. The separatists must take or encircle the city if they wish to gain land access to Crimea, which was annexed by Russia early last year. But Ukrainian forces, many of them volunteers, say they are determined to defend it. Patrick Wells reports from Mariupol.
Video

Video Moscow Restaurants Suffer in Bad Economy, Look for Opportunity

As low oil prices and Western sanctions force Russia's economy into recession, thousands of Moscow restaurants are expected to close their doors. Restaurant owners face rents tied to foreign currency, while rising food prices mean Russians are spending less when they dine out. One entrepreneur in Moscow has started a dinner kit delivery service for those who want to cook at home to save money but not skimp on quality. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video US, Cuba Report Progress in Latest Talks to Restore Ties

The United States and Cuba say they have made progress in the second round of talks on restoring diplomatic relations more than 50 years after breaking off ties. Delegations from both sides met in Washington on Friday to work on opening embassies in Havana and Washington and iron out key obstacles to historic change. VOA’s Mary Alice Salinas reports from the State Department.
Video

Video Presidential Hopefuls Battle for Conservative Hearts and Minds

One after another, presumptive Republican presidential contenders auditioned for conservative support this week at the Conservative Political Action Conference held outside Washington. The rhetoric was tough as a large field of potential candidates tried to woo conservative support with red-meat attacks on President Barack Obama and Democrats in Congress. VOA Political Columnist Jim Malone takes a look.
Video

Video NYC's Restaurant Week: An Economic Boom in Fine Dining

New Yorkers take pride in setting world trends — in fashion, the arts and fine dining. The city’s famous biannual Restaurant Week plays a significant role in a booming tourism industry that sustains 359,000 jobs and generates $61 billion in yearly revenue. VOA's Ramon Taylor reports.
Video

Video Brookhaven at Cutting Edge of US Energy Research

Issues like the Keystone XL pipeline, fracking and instability in the Middle East are driving debate in the U.S. about making America energy independent. Recently, the American Energy Innovation Council urged Congress and the White House to make expanded energy research a priority. One beneficiary of increased energy spending would be the Brookhaven National Lab, where clean, renewable, efficient energy is the goal. VOA's Bernard Shusman reports.
Video

Video Southern US Cities Preserve Civil Rights Heritage to Boost Tourism

There has been a surge of interest in the American civil rights movement of the 1950s and '60s, thanks in part to the Hollywood motion picture "Selma." Five decades later, communities in the South are embracing the dark chapters of their past with hopes of luring tourism dollars. VOA's Chris Simkins reports.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More