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Turkey hits back

Smoke rises from the explosion area after several Syrian shells crashed inside the town of Akcakale in Turkey, killing at least five people yesterday. It wasn’t the first deadly cross-border incident between the two neighbors during the 18-month-long uprising in Syria.

ISTANBUL – Tensions rippled across Turkey today, a day after Syrian shelling struck a Turkish border town and killed five people.

Turkey fired on Syrian government targets in retaliation for the artillery fire that struck the town of Akcakale.

In an emergency session today, Turkey’s parliament authorised a resolution giving the government permission to deploy its soldiers to foreign countries, a semiofficial news agency said.

“This should not be seen as a war resolution,” said Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay. “It’s for the purposes of protecting our interests and for possible developments. It is a preventative measure.”

With the United Nations serving as an intermediary between Syria and Turkey, Atalay said Syria accepted responsibility for Wednesday’s shelling and apologised.

“Syria accepts that they did it and says it will not happen again,” Ataly said.

The developments underscore longstanding fears that the spillover from Syria’s more than 18-month-long civil war could ignite a wider regional conflict.


The Turkish military began its retaliation Wednesday and continued it today. It’s the first time Turkey has fired into Syria during the crisis.

The forces shelled Syrian military sites today in Tal Abyad, about 6.2 miles from the Turkish border, the opposition Local Coordination Committees of Syria reported. (CNN)

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