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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Press TV

Erdogan concerned by world powers 'arms wrestling' on Syria amid tensions between Russia, US

Iran Press TV

Thu Apr 12, 2018 05:35PM

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called on world powers to stop "arms wrestling" on Syria amid an unprecedented upsurge of tension between the United States and Russia over an alleged chemical attack near the Syrian capital earlier this month.

"We are extremely worried that some countries confident of their military power are turning Syria into a scene for arm wrestling," Erdogan said Thursday.

The Turkish president said he would speak later in the day with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to find a possible mechanism that could prevent chemical attacks in Syria.

US President Donald Trump has warned Russia, which maintains a military presence in Syria, that US missiles "will be coming" to Syria in retaliation for an alleged chemical weapons attack on April 7 in the Syrian town of Douma.

The United States and its allies have blamed the Syrian government for the attack which reportedly killed dozens, although Damascus vehemently rejects the allegations and insists they are part of a wider effort to undermine the gains made by the pro-government forces against militants in Eastern Ghouta.

Erdogan's warning about potential conformation in Syria echoed similar concerns by Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim who on Wednesday called on Russia and the US to stop "street fighting" on Syria.

Turkey itself is in the midst of a military operation in northern Syria, where it is battling Kurdish forces allied to the US.

In his Thursday speech in Ankara, Erdogan again criticized Washington for its support for the Kurdish militants in northern Syria, saying Turkey would continue to fight that mistake "until the end."

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