President Bashar al-Assad has been quoted as saying he regrets Syria’s shooting down of a Turkish warplane.
He says the jet had been flying in a corridor previously used by Israeli aircraft and that his forces only learned it was Turkish after it was hit.
Speaking to Turkey’s Cumhuriyet newspaper, Assad also said he would not allow tensions between the two countries to turn into open combat.
Turkey sharply rebuked Syria and heightened military activity along its southern border after the jet was downed over the Mediterranean on June 22. Its two pilots have not been found.
Despite the international community’s latest diplomatic efforts, fighting continues to rage in Syria in what is looking increasingly like a civil war.
At least 78 people were killed in Monday’s violence according to activists.