Ankara awaits reply from Damascus on security concerns
Syria-Turkey, Politics, 9/30/1998
Sources at the Turkish embassy in Damascus said Turkey has not yet received a Syrian reply concerning security issues raised by the Turkish side with the Syrian delegation in Ankara during the visit of the Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Adnan Omran to Turkey, few months ago.
The sources quoted a statement distributed to the Turkish embassies abroad that Sermit Janleh, the deputy spokesman for the Turkish foreign minister, said that Turkey proposed "announced principles" which were not replied by the Syrian side.
He added, "It is very important that Syria will respond to the legitimate concerns."
He continued that the "commander of the Turkish land forces had expressed this feeling, felt by all in the country." Janleh expressed "Turkey's real and sincere intention to salvage relations, which reached a stalemate with Syria," as well as to boost them in the service of the two countries' interests.
He said his country had "elaborated to the Syrian side the framework that should be made to achieve this objective." He said the main element in this respect pertains to security concern felt by Turkey.
Political observers in Damascus assessed this position as a "shy retreat in the campaigns recently launched by Turkey against Damascus" as the result of "pressures exerted by several Arab countries on Turkey."
The observers find in this Turkish stand "an attempt made by Turkey to place the ball in the Syrian court" after Damascus intensified its campaigns against Ankara for maintaining its military alliance with Israel.
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