Syria’s NATO Neighbors, Feeling the Heat of Their Failed War, Reach-Out To Assad

[ Italian intelligence chief visits Syria, discusses counterterrorism cooperation with Assad – report ]

Turkey to develop ties with Syria – PM Yildirim


Turkey’s Prime Minister Binali Yildirim has said his country will aim to develop relations with Syria.

Mr Yildirim said Turkey needed to boost diplomatic relations in the region.

His televised speech appears to suggest a sharp U-turn by the government. Diplomatic ties between Turkey and Syria were severed after the Syrian conflict began in 2011.

Turkey has long said the only solution for regional peace would be for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to go.

Mr Yildirim said the stability of Syria and Iraq were crucial for the success of counter-terrorism efforts.

The news comes at a time of great political instability in the country, says the BBC’s Katy Watson in Istanbul.

In the past year, Turkey has been hit by a wave of bombings from both Kurdish militants and the so-called Islamic State.