Turkey says Saudis, Qatar should attend Syria peace talks

AP , Wednesday 28 Dec 2016

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says Saudi Arabia and Qatar should join its meeting with Russia and Iran to discuss Syrian peace efforts.

Russia, Turkey and Iran, which helped broker the withdrawal of civilians and militants from the Syrian city of Aleppo, have agreed to hold talks on Syria in Kazakhstan next month.

Erdogan said Tuesday the meeting of foreign ministers should include Saudi Arabia and Qatar, saying they had "shown goodwill and given support" to Syria.

Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar are the main backers of rebels seeking to topple Syrian President Bashar Assad, who is closely allied with Moscow and Tehran.

Erdogan added, however, that Turkey would not take part if any "terror organizations" are also invited, referring to Syrian Kurdish groups affiliated with Kurdish insurgents in Turkey.

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