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Thu Oct 11, 2012, 01:11 PM

Russia-Syria plane carried 'ammunition' - Turkey PM

Source: BBC

A Syrian-bound plane intercepted by Turkey was carrying Russian-made defence equipment destined for Syria's defence ministry, Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said.

"Passenger aircraft can't carry ammunition and defence equipment," Mr Erdogan said, adding, "unfortunately there was such equipment on board".

Speaking to reporters in Ankara, Mr Erdogan said "equipment and ammunition shipped to the Syrian defence ministry" had been recovered from the plane and was being examined. He said "the necessary will follow," Associated Press reports, without giving further details.

The BBC's James Reynolds, on the Syrian border in southern Turkey, says that despite taking opposite views on Assad, Ankara and Moscow have continued to have a close relationship and do business together.

Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-19912534



None of us know what was or wasn't on that plane, but it is interesting that the Turkish prime minister made this statement. It would have been easier to walk it back later if the foreign minister or some lower level government spokesperson had made the statement.

Turkey and Russia may "have continued to have a close relationship and do business together" up until now but I doubt that Putin will take kindly to this Turkish action and the statement of the prime minister. Something tells me that the 'close relationship' between Turkey and Russia is about to change. Turkey must have known this when they forced that plane to land.

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Arrow 21 replies Author Time Post
Reply Russia-Syria plane carried 'ammunition' - Turkey PM (Original post)
pampango Oct 2012 OP
Canuckistanian Oct 2012 #1
Posteritatis Oct 2012 #2
riderinthestorm Oct 2012 #8
Canuckistanian Oct 2012 #9
riderinthestorm Oct 2012 #12
elbloggoZY27 Oct 2012 #3
UnrepentantLiberal Oct 2012 #4
Selatius Oct 2012 #20
bemildred Oct 2012 #21
Comrade Grumpy Oct 2012 #5
dipsydoodle Oct 2012 #6
athena Oct 2012 #14
Comrade Grumpy Oct 2012 #15
arewenotdemo Oct 2012 #17
Selatius Oct 2012 #19
arewenotdemo Oct 2012 #16
dipsydoodle Oct 2012 #7
David__77 Oct 2012 #10
pampango Oct 2012 #11
bemildred Oct 2012 #13
dipsydoodle Oct 2012 #18

Response to pampango (Original post)

Thu Oct 11, 2012, 03:35 PM

1. Russia can take a flying leap

If you had a belligerent neighbour that kills your citizens in cross-border mortar attacks, then flies planes filled with ammunition over your airspace, you'd have a right to be angry and to take action.

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Response to Canuckistanian (Reply #1)

Thu Oct 11, 2012, 03:37 PM

2. It's not the first time they've tried running weapons there during this, either. (nt)

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Response to Canuckistanian (Reply #1)

Thu Oct 11, 2012, 08:16 PM

8. Turkey started this by flying into Syrian airspace multiple times, with fighter jets!

Turkey is also arming militants of questionable allegiance and eagerly participating in the Saudi/Sunni escalation of religious tensions that have been brewing for a long time against the Shia (of which Assad is a member of the Alawite Shia sect).

Russia is trying to tamp down a wider break out of ancient regional religious and tribal warfare. Yes they have a military base in Syria that they are trying to protect BUT they are also cognizant that if Assad is removed by force there will most likely be a genocidal bloodbath in the region. With a nuclear armed Israel in the middle of it.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Reply #8)

Thu Oct 11, 2012, 10:53 PM

9. Hmmm

But Turkey has NEVER fired on Syria, except for retaliation for the border incident.

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Response to Canuckistanian (Reply #9)

Fri Oct 12, 2012, 09:37 AM

12. A distinction without a difference. Turkey is training "rebels" in Istanbul, providing weapons

and ammunition, even anti-tank weapons and rocket propelled grenades.

Which side in Syria "wins" by painting the Syrian Army/Assad as provoking a war with Turkey? BIG hint! Its not Assad's regime which will be crushed like a bug if Turkey brings out the big guns, provoking a massive regional genocide. Iran's already said that if Assad is forcibly removed they'll go after Israel (publicly recognizing and highlighting the US role in this entire affair) - now won't THAT be pretty?!

I know Assad publicly apologized for the missile attack but honestly, it isn't at all clear who fired that weapon. Assad had no choice but to try to tamp this thing down, even if his regime wasn't responsible for it, because the results for him and the rest of the Shia in the region if Turkey DOES get involved are catastrophic.

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Response to pampango (Original post)

Thu Oct 11, 2012, 04:59 PM

3. Syria Tyranny

 

Assad of Syria needs to be removed from office and is President in what is an election farce. The citizens of Syria need the worlds support and Russia is still no friend of the West.

Turkey needs our support also.

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Response to pampango (Original post)

Thu Oct 11, 2012, 05:38 PM

4. It sure seems like Turkey wants to go in

 

and run Assad out of Syria.

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Response to UnrepentantLiberal (Reply #4)

Sat Oct 13, 2012, 05:33 AM

20. Historically, Turkey and Russia have been at odds over things such as trade routes.

Turkey controls the Bosporus Straits leading into and out of the Black Sea. In the past, the Russian Black Seas naval fleet needed access to the Bosporus to get into the Mediterranean or even the Red Sea and all points beyond. In a time of war, such as World War One, the Turks were more than capable of closing the Bosporus to any naval armada that tried to traverse that strait, and this has caused problems between Turkey and Russia in the past. Of course, back then, it was the Ottoman Empire and Czarist Russia that were at odds.

Today, Syria is an important ally for Russia in two ways. First, Syria has been a long time consumer of Russian military hardware; they are a Russian client state in that regard. Second, the Syrians leased the naval port at Tartus to the Russian fleet. Losing Syria to potentially pro-western or a non-aligned rebellion would likely signal the end of Russia's naval port on the Mediterranean. The tanks and warplanes that were used to slaughter innocent protesters in the run-up to the civil war are Russian in origin, and the Syrian people know that very well.

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Response to Selatius (Reply #20)

Sat Oct 13, 2012, 06:18 AM

21. Yes, people forget, or forget Turkey is in NATO.

Turkey and Russia are pragmatic, but they are not at all buddies.

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Response to pampango (Original post)

Thu Oct 11, 2012, 05:43 PM

5. I wonder how Turkey would feel if Syria harbored PKK fighters.

Turkey sure has no problem dealing harshly with its terrorists. Hypocrisy knows no borders.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Reply #5)

Thu Oct 11, 2012, 06:26 PM

6. The PKK are classed as terrorists

because Bush wanted it that way.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Reply #5)

Fri Oct 12, 2012, 12:58 PM

14. Hypocrisy?

How ironic.

How would you feel if Mexico fired missiles into U.S. territory because its rebels were crossing into the U.S. to protect themselves while fighting? Suppose one such rocket killed American civilians, including several children. Would you be so cavalier about not striking back?

Perhaps you should inform yourself about what is happening before accusing entire countries of hypocrisy.
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/04/world/middleeast/syria.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

It was unclear if the mortar that struck Turkey was fired by government forces or by rebels fighting to oust the government of Mr. Assad, but Turkey believed it came from a government position, Turkish analysts said. The government said it used radar to select the target for its strikes, believed to be Syrian military outposts.

The shell that set off the outrage struck a building in Akcakale, one of the largest cities along Turkey’s 550-mile border with Syria, killing a woman, her three children and a relative. Officials said that eight other people were wounded, and that two were in critical condition. The town had been hit before amid the clashes between rebels and government forces, but no one on the Turkish side had been killed before. Stray mortars have also landed across other borders, including Lebanon and Iraq.

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Response to athena (Reply #14)

Fri Oct 12, 2012, 04:00 PM

15. I dunno.

How would you feel if Mexico were providing training, supplies, and safe haven to American rebels and then it got all pissed off because we fired at them near the border and some of their civilians died?

I'm quite aware of what is happening in the Middle East. I have followed it for decades, but thanks for your concern.

The Turks have had no qualms about quashing the PKK. They've even invaded other countries to go after their safe havens, yet they have no problem letting their territory be used as a staging area for the FSA.

The Turks treat the PKK the way Syria treats its rebels, with an iron fist. I will grant that the Turks haven't taken to bombing whole civilian neighborhoods, but then, the PKK hasn't taken over whole civilian neighborhoods.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Reply #15)

Sat Oct 13, 2012, 03:38 AM

17. Should arming the Syrian rebels be seen as an act of war?

 

Because it certainly seems that it should to me.

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Response to arewenotdemo (Reply #17)

Sat Oct 13, 2012, 05:23 AM

19. As far as I know, we're not arming the rebellion in Syria. Our allies in the Gulf, however, are.

The nations in the Persian Gulf and other allies of the United States in the Middle East have been pretty forward about providing weapons and ammunition to the rebels inside Syria.

Now, if it came out years later that the United States, through the CIA, was funneling weapons and ammunition to the Syrian rebels, I wouldn't be surprised at all.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Reply #5)

Sat Oct 13, 2012, 03:34 AM

16. I agree.

 

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Response to pampango (Original post)

Thu Oct 11, 2012, 06:29 PM

7. If he's expecting general support from NATO

he might be onto a loser.

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Response to pampango (Original post)

Fri Oct 12, 2012, 05:09 AM

10. Solidarity with Syria, against Turkey.

If Turkey is so hot for war, it just may be obliged. So much for its "European" ambitions. It turns out to be something quite else.

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Response to David__77 (Reply #10)

Fri Oct 12, 2012, 06:13 AM

11. Solidarity with the Syrian people and the Turkish people. Like all people they want peace,

prosperity and freedom. Neither want nor deserve a war on either side of the border.

No solidarity with Assad or Erdogan as leaders. Leaders should be selected by their people and are a means to an end not an end in themselves.

As for Turkey's "European" ambitions, there are enough far-right politicians in Europe that have a stroke every time the possibility of Turkey joining the EU is mentioned (you know how they feel about those scary Muslims ), that it not likely to happen in our lifetime.

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Response to pampango (Original post)

Fri Oct 12, 2012, 11:15 AM

13. I agree with your comments.

Whatever Erdogan might be, he is not naive, and it's pretty clear he is fed up.

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Response to pampango (Original post)

Sat Oct 13, 2012, 04:26 AM

18. Russia: Syrian plane legally carried radar parts

Last edited Sat Oct 13, 2012, 05:39 AM - Edit history (1)

MOSCOW (AP) -- A Syrian plane that was forced to land in Turkey was legally carrying Russian radar parts for Syria, Russia's foreign minister said Friday.

Sergey Lavrov insisted the shipment of "electric equipment for radars" was a legitimate cargo that complied with international law, but he added that it was of "dual purpose," meaning it could have civilian and military applications.

"It's not forbidden by any international conventions," Lavrov said, adding that the Russian company that sent it to Syria will demand that Turkey return the cargo. He didn't name the Russian company or the cargo's recipient in Syria.

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/E/EU_RUSSIA_SYRIAN_PLANE?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2012-10-12-12-00-31

Syria plane carried radar parts, not weapons - Russia.

"There were no weapons on the plane," said Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

His comments followed heated exchanges between Turkey and Syria over the exact nature of the items confiscated.

Turkey's PM earlier said Russian-made defence equipment was found on board - a claim Syria dismissed as a lie.

Damascus has challenged the Turks to put the seized goods on public view.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-19928139

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