London: Syria has reached a "point of no
return" in the regime's crackdown on opposition demonstrators,
Turkish President Abdullah Gul said today during his state
visit to Britain.
"Unfortunately Syria has come to a point of no return,"
Gul said in a speech, adding that the whole region could be
dragged into "turmoil and bloodshed" by the crisis.
His comments come after Turkish Prime Minister Recep
Tayyip Erdogan yesterday called for Syrian President Bashar
al-Assad to go, branding him a coward and warning he risked
the same fate of dictators who met bloody deaths.
Gul told an audience in London that the fate of Syria,
where the risk of civil war is looming, was "important for the
entire region, since the country sits on top of sectarian
"In fact, not only for Syria, but for the entire region
we have a responsibility to defend the territorial integrity
and political unity of the countries at all cost," he added.
"New and old divisions between and within the
countries of the region should not be allowed to take root."
Gul warned: "Defining this democratic struggle along the
sectarian, religious and ethnic lines would drag the whole
region into turmoil and bloodshed."
The United Nations says more than 3,500 people, most of
them civilians, have been killed since the protests first
broke out in Syria in March.
First Published: Wednesday, November 23, 2011, 18:32