Erdoğan on possible talks with Syria: States can never exclude political dialogue

Asked about potential talks with the Assad regime, Turkish President Erdoğan has said that states can "never rule out political dialogue or diplomacy."

Duvar English - Reuters

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said he can never rule out dialogue and diplomacy with Syria, a neighboring country in which it has carried out several incursions in recent years, according to a transcript of his comments to reporters.

Asked about potential talks with the Assad regime, he was quoted as saying diplomacy between states can never be fully severed, taking what appeared to be a softer tone than his previous comments. There is a "need to take further steps with Syria," Erdoğan said.

"We do not have eyes on the territory of Syria because the people of Syria are our brothers," he also said. "The regime must be aware of this."

Ankara backs the opposition sides in Syria's war. Damascus accuses Ankara of supporting "terrorist" groups in Syria.

Erdogan promised earlier this year to conduct another military operation into northern Syria. Since 2016, Turkey helped its Syrian allies seize hundreds of kilometers of land and pushed some 30 km deep into the country, mainly targeting the Kurdish YPG militia, which it deems a terrorist organization.