On Line: 08 July 2012 16:48
In Print: Monday 09 July 2012
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has said that his countrys efforts to topple the Syrian government have been in vain.
Speaking to the France24 network on Saturday night, Davutoglu noted that Turkey had exerted all efforts to end Bashar al-Assad's era, but, "unfortunately, he said, we have failed in this issue."
He further said that the international community should act more determinedly for Syria.
Stressing that Turkey acted carefully not to intervene in other countries' internal affairs, Davutoglu said that however, the situation in Syria created uneasiness for Turkey's national security due to tension along the border and arrival of 30,000 Syrians in Turkey.
Meanwhile, the Syrian Naval Forces on Saturday launched a military drill in order to simulate the repelling of a sudden attack from the sea.
The live-fire maneuver, which was attended by high-ranking military officials including the Syrian Defense Minister Gen. Dawood Rajha, will continue for several days to test the readiness of the Syrian armed forces, the state news agency SANA reported.
A variety of missiles were launched from the sea, coast and helicopters during the maneuver, hitting all targets with high precision, the agency said.
The Syrian defense minister praised the ability of the naval forces to defend the country's shores against any possible attack.
The exercise comes after Syria said on June 22 that its air defense forces shot down a Turkish F-4 Phantom in Syrian airspace. The warplane crashed into the Mediterranean Sea.
On Sunday, Syrian security forces said they have arrested 11 foreign spies from different Arab countries in Damascus.
The alleged operatives were detained in the Reef region of the capital.
The arrests do not mark the first such case. In February, a Saudi Arabian intelligence agent was detained in Syria's western city of Homs.
Syria has said certain foreign countries, including Saudi Arabia and Qatar, are supporting armed groups operating against Damascus and supplying them with weaponry and finances.
Syria has been the scene of violence by armed groups since March 2011. The violence has claimed the lives of hundreds of people, including many security forces.
Damascus blames outlaws, saboteurs, and armed terrorist groups for the unrest, asserting that it is being orchestrated from abroad.