Diplomatic Moves Underway to Defuse the Turkey-Syria Flashpoint
October 14, 2012 • 5:35AM

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has called for establishing a "mechanism of direct security communication between Syria and Turkey" to defuse the crisis and to "control the security situation on both sides of the border in the framework of respecting the national sovereignty of the two countries," the official Syrian news Agency SANA reported Saturday. The Syrian Foreign Ministry responded with a statement that "Syria welcomes Lavrov's statement on the necessity to create a mechanism of direct dialogue on security issues between Syria and Turkey." It is not known if Russia has presented the proposal yet to Turkey.

Other emergency diplomacy is also underway with the visit to Istanbul yesterday by German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, Arab League head Nabil Elaraby, and United Nations envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, all of whom are meeting with Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu. Brahimi arrived in Turkey after meeting Friday with Saudi King Fahd, where the two agreed "on the dire need to stop the bloodshed and provide humanitarian aid to the more than 2.5 million Syrians" affected. BBC reported that Brahimi "carries no immediately obvious peace plan," but that if talks in Turkey go well, he could fly to Damascus next week.