UN chief supports PM’s stance in Davos .hurriyet2008-detailbox-newslink { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:13px; font-weight:bold; text-decoration:none; color:#000000;} .hurriyet2008-detailbox-newslink:hover { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:13px; font-weight:bold; text-decoration:underline; color:#990000;} ANKARA - The moderator of the panel discussion at the Davos World Economic Forum acted unfairly in not giving Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan a right to respond, said U.N. Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon in a phone call to the prime minister last night.

"You were not allowed to express yourself due to the unjust and unfair conduct of the moderator in Davos," the U.N. Secretary-General said.

We need your leadership in the Middle East, he reportedly said to Erdoğan. Ban was among the spectators of the Gaza panel that became heated during a debate between Erdoğan and Israeli President Shimon Peres. "As you know, the Middle East is going through a tough period. This region needs your leadership and mediation," Ban said. Ban also told Erdoğan he was saddened by what had taken place at the panel discussion in Davos last week, adding he had full confidence in Erdogan's leadership.

Erdoğan responded that Turkey was ready to give everything it had for peace. Ban said he trusted Erdoğan’s initiative and leadership. "Please let us stay in touch. The Middle East needs this," Ban added.

Erdoğan walked away from the Gaza panel at the forum in Davos, after a heated debate with Israeli President Shimon Peres and moderator David Ignatius. Erdoğan said his reaction was caused by the moderator, not Peres. Erdoğan has become one of the most vocal critics of Israel’s Gaza offensive.