Turkey strikes Syrian targets retaliating to mortar attack on border

The explosion area after several Syrian shells crashed inside Akcakale town in Turkey people on October 3, 2012, in Sanliurfa. (AFP Photo / Rauf Maltas /Anatolia)

Turkey has fired back at Syria after Syrian mortar bombs killed five people and wounded eight others in a Turkish town near the border, says the Turkish Prime Minister’s office. NATO schedules an urgent meeting to be held later in the day.

Our armed forces in the border region immediately retaliated against this heinous attack… by shelling the targets spotted by radar,” Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s office said in a statement.

Turkey will never leave unanswered such kinds of provocation by the Syrian regime against our national security,” the office added. According to Syrian media, Turkish artillery hit targets in the province of Idlib.

In the official statement, NATO urged Syria to put end to “flagrant violations of international law,” saying that it stands by Turkey, Reuters reported.

Turkey is now deploying tanks, artillery and missile batteries to the Syria border, reports Mahir Zeynalov, a journalist with the prominent Turkish newspaper Today’s Zaman, citing sources on the ground.

NATO ambassadors are to convene later in the day to discuss the shelling of the Turkish town. The meeting will be held under NATO Article 4, for consultations when a member state feels territorial integrity is under threat, officials say. Continue reading

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