Throughout Damascus, there are small blue plaques with yellow Arabic writing, providing a brief history of an important building, event, or person who once lived nearby. The plaques are not only in the historic medina adima --- The Old City --- but also in newer neighborhoods, such as Sha’alan. Some commemorate the martyrs who died resisting the Ottoman presence in the city during World War I --- they are a reminder of Syria’s troubled ties with its northern neighbour Turkey and the factors which are shaping the response of Ankara, and the "West", to recent events in and beyond Damascus.
Entries in Mustafa Kemal Ataturk (2)
On Tuesday, as hundreds of thousands of protesters gathered in Cairo, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to "listen to people's outcries and extremely humanistic demands" and continued his advice:
Meet the freedom demands of people without a doubt. In today’s world, freedoms cannot be postponed or overlooked.
We are mortal. We will all die and be judged by those who remain. As Muslims, our final address is a two-cubic-meter hole. What matters is to be remembered with respect. We should listen to the voice of our conscience and the voice of our people and be ready either for their good prayers or curses. We are for the people; we are in the service of the people.
Turkey will continue to stand side-by-side with both the Tunisian and Egyptian people and continue to share their hope and happiness.