Monday, August 27, 2012

7,000 "Syrian refugees" massed at "Turkish border"

Some 7,000 Syrian refugees have massed on the border with Turkey, waiting for more camps to be set up to accommodate those fleeing the fighting in Syria, a Turkish diplomat told AFP on Monday.

"5,000 refugees are waiting on Syrian side of the Oncupinar border crossing in Kilis province and 2,000 others at Reyhanli in Hatay province," said the diplomat speaking on condition of anonymity.

Turkey is home to more than 80,000 refugees staying in camps along the border but the existing camps are not adequate to shelter an influx of refugees fleeing the fighting in Syria.

Two more camps are being set up in Gaziantep and Hatay provinces with a total capacity of 10,000 to shelter the newcomers, added the diplomat.

The exodus of refugees to Turkey has intensified this month as a result of a Syrian army offensive and fighting in the northern city of Aleppo.

Turkish authorities have been distributing aid to refugees who are waiting on Syrian soil who are waiting to cross into Turkey.

The Turkish government had earlier said it could handle no more than 100,0000 Syrian refugees and proposed setting up a UN buffer zone inside Syria to shelter them.

The increasing flow of refugees has raised fears of a repeat of the 1991 Gulf War in 1991, when 500,000 Iraqi Kurds massed along the common border.



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