News / Middle East

Syria Bans Turkish Airline Overflights

Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses a forum in Istanbul, October 13, 2012.
Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses a forum in Istanbul, October 13, 2012.
VOA News

 

Syria says it is banning Turkish civilian flights from its airspace.

A Syrian Foreign Ministry statement said the ban was to take effect at midnight Saturday and comes in response to a Turkish move to ban Syrian flights.

The Syrian announcement comes three days after Turkey intercepted a Syrian passenger plane traveling from Moscow to Damascus and seized military hardware and munitions it says were destined for the embattled government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.  Syria has denied the plane was carrying military cargo.

For its part, Turkey stepped up tank patrols Saturday on its 900-kilometer border with Syria, days after cross-border Syrian artillery fire hit several Turkish villages.  The Ankara government has threatened to retaliate against further threats to its territory.
 

Meanwhile, International peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi arrived in Istanbul Saturday to discuss the escalating tensions.  Brahimi also addressed the Syrian conflict Friday with Saudi King Abdullah in Jeddah, where the two agreed on the need to stop the bloodshed and to aid the millions of Syrians affected by the country's civil war. 

On the diplomatic front, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan strongly criticized the United Nations Security Council  Saturday for inaction on the Syrian crisis.   Speaking in Istanbul, he said it has become "more and more difficult" each day for the world body to fulfill its duties due to "unjust, unequal and inactive mechanisms."

"If we leave the issue to the vote of one or two members of the permanent five at the United Nations, then the aftermath of Syria would be very hazardous and humanity will write it down in history with unforgettable remarks," Erdogan said.

More than 30,000 people have been killed in the Syrian conflict, which pits forces loyal to President Assad against rebels who control large swaths of Syrian territory.  The conflict began last year as a popular uprising against four decades of Assad family rule before spiraling into civil war.


Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Soul from: Heart
October 13, 2012 10:43 PM
UN has become the puppet of big powers and great alliances, that twists the outcomes according to their wish. This is the same world body that assisted and applauded the Sri Lankan govt. that committed serious crimes amounting to Genocide and made some 146 000 civilians disappear in few weeks in 2009. It's the same body that preaches peace and reconciliations with that criminal regime. 30 000 Syrians may be a few according to the pundits of world, for if the issue drags on for a while, there may be some more deaths on both sides and at the end of the day there will be a few hundred thousand mouths to feed.

by: Anonymous
October 13, 2012 8:45 PM
Russia and China are in the same boat with Assad, they want to sell high tech to kill more innocent people of Syria. This is how these two countries want to experiment the new weapons, There is no chance for Russia and China to win the war with Assad, too many innocent Syrian people die with Assad regime. UN must add more permanent members to the council

by: Bryan from: California
October 13, 2012 8:26 PM
this man who leads Turkey is absolutely right .. look at the list of
votes in the General Assembly against the UN resolution against the dictator in Damascus ..

See how many of the worst dictatorships you can name ..

Answer: 12 votes supporting Assad are Russia, China, Syria, Iran, Belarus, Bolivia, Cuba, Myanmar, Nicaragua, North Korea, Venezuela and Zimbabwe.

by: Carlos.. from: San Jose
October 13, 2012 8:20 PM
His words are lost on President Obama .. the great orator and entertainer in the White House mouths soaring rhetoric but his failure of act betrays cowardice .. it is disgraceful and despicable .. rch 28, 2011, "when people were being brutalized in Bosnia in the 1990s, it took the international community more than a year to intervene with air power to protect civilians." www.whitehouse.gov/photos-and-video/video/2011/03/28/president-obama-s-speech-libya

“To brush aside America’s responsibility as a leader and — more profoundly — our responsibilities to our fellow human beings under such circumstances would have been a betrayal of who we are,” (Except in an election year?)

“Some nations may be able to turn a blind eye to atrocities in other countries. The United States of America is different,” (Except in an election year)

“And as president, I refused to wait for the images of slaughter and mass graves before taking action.”

I have been to Aleppo and never met a kinder people ..

by: Maithe GASPARI from: Paris, France
October 13, 2012 5:12 PM
Erdogan should calm down. He would like to be the center of the world and keep imagining stories, giving 'lessons' to democracies. He tries to use NATO and so on. Enough is enough. UN are not the trouble: he is the trouble!! A big one.
And please VOA don't put Turkey in 'Europe' . Turkey is not an European country (thank God!!!)
In Response

by: uzun from: Sc
October 14, 2012 4:54 PM
Dear Maithe,
This is not the issue between France &Turkey or west & Turkey... Please make an emphaty for the people who are suffering ..!!
If you believe human rights...
"All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.
And Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.
best

by: Papandreou from: Greece
October 13, 2012 12:48 PM
LOL... unjust, unequal and inactive mechanisms...." Hey Turk get out of Cyprus!!! Get out of Constantinople !!! you malevolent idiot

by: Anonymous
October 13, 2012 11:53 AM
The gall of Erdogan... Turkey blames the UN for problems that it helped cause. Turkey itself should be sanctioned by the UN for inflaming an insurrection and causing the situation in Syria.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs