Turkey: Three wounded as Syrian forces fire over border

Turkey: Three wounded as Syrian forces fire over border

Turkey: Three wounded as Syrian forces fire over border

AA photo

Syrian forces fired across the border at protesters at a refugee camp in Turkey today, wounding a Turkish translator and at least two Syrian refugees, in the first such attack since Turkey began sheltering thousands of refugees last summer, authorities said.

Turkish deputy foreign minister, meanwhile, said April 10 Syria military withdrawal deadline was now void and a new stage was to begin on Tuesday, Reuters reported. 

A government official, speaking on condition of anonymity in line with government rules, said Turkey immediately protested the incident to the Syrian charge d'affaires and asked that the fire be halted, the Associated Press reported.

Two refugees and one Turkish citizen, a translator, were wounded inside the camp near the town of Kilis in the southwestern Gaziantep province, he said.

Gaziantep Gov. Yusuf Odabaş said the translator had entered the camp to try to help calm a protest against the Syrian regime. Border crossings from Syria into the Kilis area were stopped after the attack, the governor said.

Turkish security forces were reinforced in the well-marked border area following the attack, state television said.

Odabas said, meanwhile, that two of 13 Syrians who had been wounded in clashes inside Syria and were brought to Kilis for treatment earlier Monday have died.

More than 24,000 refugees have crossed from Syria into Turkey. Syrian forces are escalating attacks across the country to try to crush a 13-month uprising against President Bashar Assad.

Separately, a leading international human rights group said Syrian forces have summarily executed more than 100 people, most of them civilians. This includes several mass executions in the restive provinces of Homs and Idlib, Monday's report by Human Rights Watch said.

The New-York-based group says it only included cases corroborated by witnesses but has received more reports of similar incidents. The executions took place over the past four months, with most in March.

An internationally brokered truce requires Syrian forces to pull out of population centers by Tuesday. But Assad's government now wants guarantees that rebels will lay down their arms.