Erdogan says Turkey has maintained ‘low-level’ contacts with Syrian regime

ISTANBUL — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday says his government maintained “low-level” contact through its spy agency with the Syrian regime despite being one of its most fervent critics.

“The foreign policy is being conducted with Syria at low-level,” Erdogan tells the state-run TRT television in an interview.

Erdogan’s government fell out with Damascus after its deadly crackdown on popular dissent in March 2011, and ruled out any contact with the regime of President Bashar Assad.

Erdogan’s comments are the first time Turkey has confirmed direct low-level talks with Damascus.

“Even if it’s your enemy, you will not entirely break ties in case you might need them,” he says.


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