Turkish PM: Syrian leader ‘mute devil’

SHARJAH, United Arab Emirates: Turkey’s prime minister is urging the world to speak out about atrocities by Syria’s leader, whom he called a “mute devil” for carrying out attacks on his own people but not standing up to Israel.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan received applause Sunday at a government communications forum in theUnited Arab Emirates, which has joined other Gulf nations in backing Syrian rebels seeking to topplePresident Bashar Assad.

Erdogan urged world leaders to denounce attacks on civilians by the Syrian regime. He described Assad as a “mute devil” for exercising brutality against Syrians while not pressing harder to challenge Israel over its occupation of the Golan Heights.

Israel captured the strategic plateau in 1967. Despite hostility between the two countries, Israel and Syria have not gone to war since 1973.