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Erdogan: Assad Will be Ousted Sooner or Later

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has stressed that “sooner or later” Syrian President Bashar Assad will be ousted by his own people.

Erdogan, in an interview on CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS” to be aired Sunday, he said: “You can never remain in power through cruelty. You can never stand before the will of the people.”

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Four More Top Officers Held for Turkish 'Coup Plot'

A Turkish court ordered a general, an admiral and two colonels held in custody for an alleged coup plot which has already seen dozens of top officers jailed, Anatolia news agency said Saturday.

It said the four serving officers are suspected of involvement in the plot dubbed Operation Sledgehammer against the government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

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Erdogan Says Turkey Stopped Ship Carrying Weapons for Syria

Turkey has stopped a shipload of weapons destined for Syria, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Friday, warning his country would seize any similar shipment made by air or land.

"Turkey has arrested a ship flying the Syrian flag and carrying weapons," the Anatolia news agency quoted Erdogan as telling the press in New York where he attended the U.N. General Assembly.

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Turkish Ship Sets Sail for Gas Search Off Cyprus

A Turkish seismic ship set sail Friday for gas exploration off Cyprus, live television footage showed.

The ship "Piri Reis" departed from a local port in the Aegean province of Izmir, in an apparent response to a move by Greek Cypriots to press ahead with offshore gas drilling in the eastern Mediterranean.

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Report: Turkey Ready to Drop Gas Exploration if Cyprus does

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey is willing to drop controversial plans for offshore gas exploration in the eastern Mediterranean if its rival Cyprus is willing to do the same, the Anatolia news agency reported Friday.

Erdogan made the comments to U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon late Thursday on the margins of the annual U.N. General Assembly in New York, the agency said.

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Cyprus Slams Turkish 'Provocations' over Gas Search

Cyprus President Demetris Christofias Thursday denounced what he called Turkish provocations over exploration for hydrocarbon deposits off the divided eastern Mediterranean island's coast.

"Unfortunately, the effort of the Republic of Cyprus to exercise its sovereign right for exploitation of its marine wealth is met by threats of Turkey against Cyprus," he said in a speech to the U.N. General Assembly.

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Radical Kurd Group Says Ankara Attack 'Only a Beginning'

A radical Kurdish group claimed responsibility Thursday for a bomb attack which killed three people in the center of the Turkish capital Ankara and threatened more.

In an email sent to the pro-Kurdish Firat news agency, the Kurdistan Freedom Falcons (TAK) said it carried out Tuesday's attack and warned: "It is only a beginning."

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Three Turkish Security Officers Killed in Kurdish Attacks

Three security officials were killed in two separate attacks attributed to Kurdish rebels in east and southeast Turkey, local security sources said on Thursday.

Clashes with Kurdish rebels late Wednesday in a town in Van province in eastern Turkey resulted in the death of two Turkish security forces and left three others wounded, added the sources.

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5.6-Magnitude Quake Rattles Turkey

A moderate earthquake rattled the province of Erzincan in eastern Turkey on Thursday without causing damage or injuries, according to initial reports.

"Based on early observations, there were no injuries or damage," provincial governor Selman Yenigun told the official news agency Anatolia.

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Aoun: Collapse of Syrian Regime Will Harm Christians and Muslims

Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun noted on Wednesday that the fall of the Syrian regime will not benefit Christians or Muslims, saying that the solution to the crisis lies in change and stability.

He told UPI: “Should the Syrian regime be overthrown, then the Christians and Muslims won’t have any freedom.”

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