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Erdogan worried by world powers' 'arm wrestling' on Syria

AFP  |  Ankara 

today said was worried by the "arm wrestling" of world powers over Syria, as tensions soared between and after threats of possible US air strikes.

"We are extremely worried that some countries confident of their military power are turning into a scene for arm wrestling," Erdogan said in a speech in after and traded accusations.

His comments came after US warned on Wednesday that US missiles "will be coming" to in retaliation for an in which reportedly killed dozens.

Erdogan said he would talk to Russian about "how we stop this chemical massacre" after the suspected attack.

A Turkish presidential source later confirmed the call had taken place but said only that the two men "exchanged views on the latest developments in Syria" and agreed to maintain contact.

appears keen to keep its distance from one of the worst outbreaks of tensions since the Cold War between its NATO ally and increasingly close partner Moscow.

Erdogan's comments echoed those of his who called on and the on Wednesday to stop "street fighting" on Syria.

While Russia, alongside Iran, has been supporting the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, has repeatedly called for his ouster and supported Syrian rebels.

But and in recent months have put their differences aside and have been working closely to find a to the conflict.

Last week, Putin and Iranian President were hosted by Erdogan in for a tripartite summit to discuss the Syrian conflict.

The alleged in rebel-held Douma near on April 7 sparked international outrage and warnings of possible military action.

Turkey's foreign ministry has said it strongly suspects Assad was to blame. "God willing, the (world's) collective conscience will act together to end this crisis for th sake of the innocent children massacred in the in Douma," Erdogan vowed.

Erdogan said the Assad regime already had "a black mark on its track record" after seven years of civil war in Syria.

Without naming the countries, he appeared to lash out both at for backing Assad and the for helping the Syrian Kurdish group the Democratic Union Party (PYD), which Turkey considers a terror group.

"Those who support the regime of murderer Assad are making a mistake. Those who support the terror group are also making a mistake. Until the end, we will fight against both these mistakes.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, April 12 2018. 20:20 IST