Thursday Oct 17, 201308:55 PM GMT
Turkey returns fire at Syria militants’ targets
Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:1PM
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Turkish military forces have fired artillery at targets held by al-Qaeda-linked Takfiris in Syria in retaliation for an attack by the militants.


On Tuesday, the Turkish soldiers shot four rounds from self-propelled artillery guns at positions in the border town of Azaz under the control of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), the army said on Wednesday.

There were no immediate reports of any possible casualties or damage.

After fighting with forces of the so-called Free Syrian Army (FSA) on September 18, the Takfiri militants overran the northwestern town, a former commercial and industrial hub located five kilometers (two miles) from Syria’s border with Turkey.

This is the first time for Turkey to get engaged in such an attack. The Turkish government has itself been blamed for supporting al-Qaeda-linked groups fighting against the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since 2011. According to reports, the Western powers and their regional allies -- especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey -- are supporting the militants operating inside Syria.

The United Nations said earlier that more than four million more Syrians will be forced out of their homes in 2014 by the escalating conflict in the country.

Two million Syrians are expected to take refuge outside the country while another 2.25 million are predicted to be internally displaced in the next year.

NT/AS/MHB
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