Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said that Ankara is ready to step up the pressure on Syria by hosting an international conference of like-minded states to send a message of solidarity and support to the embattled Syrian people and to explore ways to further weaken and to isolate the regime. The intention to hold such a meeting was announced on Feb. 8 in anticipation of a Russian veto at the United Nations. “If the UN Security Council does not fulfil the mission of protecting the right to life of civilians in Syria, then there must be another platform to discuss this. We cannot be just silent observers,” he said.
Russia and China have enraged the rest of the international community when they jointly vetoed a UN Security Council resolution condemning Assad’s regime. Turkey was particularly unpleased with Moscow’s decision not to cooperate at the UN to facilitate an end to the crisis. Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who has been using anti-external intervention in Syrian within the context of domestic elections battle, warned against behaving “like a bull in a china shop,” emphasizing that only Syrians should be allowed to decide their own future.