Turkish Foreign Ministry rejects claims of killings on Syrian border
ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
REUTERS photoThe Foreign Ministry on June 19 denied claims that Turkish security forces killed a group of Syrian civilians attempting to cross the border into Turkey.
In a statement, ministry spokesman Tanju Bilgiç said the allegations “do not reflect the truth.”
“Our security forces are acting within a completely legal framework while intervening in border incidents and illegal crossing attempts,” Bilgic added.
The U.K.-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights had stated that eight Syrians were killed on the night of June 18 as they attempted to cross the border north of the Syrian town of Jisr al-Shughur.
A statement put out by the National Coalition of Syrian Revolution and Opposition Forces put the death toll at 11.
In its statement, the National Coalition expressed its “surprise and condemnation after this terrible tragedy against our brothers fleeing the regime,” according to AFP.
“The deaths of defenceless Syrians contradict the hospitality of the Turkish government and the Turkish people,” it added.
The Local Coordination Committees, an activist network, said at least one of those trying to cross was from Jarablus, a northern Syrian town under the control of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).