Turkish analysts worried about prolonged turmol in Syria
The longer the turmoil in Syria goes on, the more sectors of Turkish society, ranging from nongovernmental organizations to academics, will continue to voice their concern. Analysts agree that the situation will not be resolved anytime soon unless top Syrian authorities concede to greater democratic rule in which all sectors of society can represent themselves openly and freely. Gokhan Bacik, an associate professor at Zirve University, says Syria is a key country for Turkey's recent foreign policy towards the Middle East. Thus, the course of events in Syria will have serious effects on Turkey. Associate Professor Veysel Ayhan of the Center for Middle Eastern Strategic Studies (ORSAM) stresses that there is a context for the uprising in Syrian society, which is made up of many sects and ethnicities. "Being based on such a wide range of social roots, we would easily expect that the movements will not cease anytime soon," said Ayhan. "Turkey could also find itself in a very delicate situation, since it would not want to be labeled a country that is going against the international will by not applying those sanctions against Syria." Mehmet Seyfettin Erol, coordinator of the Center of Eurasian Strategic Studies (ASAM), argued that the implications of the uprising stand out from similar movements, as Syria has strategic importance in its region. "Thus, international actors know that direct involvement in the situation in Syria could get out of control, throwing the whole region into political chaos, and Assad knows this fact very well," Erol said.