Turkey sends anti-aircraft guns to Syrian border
Published: 28th Jun 2012 11:57:06
Turkey has begun deploying rocket launchers and anti-aircraft guns along its border with Syria after last week's downing of a Turkish military plane.
Columns of military vehicles have been seen moving from military bases to the border, close to where the jet crashed.
The Phantom went down in the sea after entering Syrian airspace and being hit by a missile. The pilots are missing.
Meanwhile, explosions have been reported outside a court complex in central Damascus.
Syrian state TV said there had been a "terrorist explosion" in the car park of the palace of justice and witnesses spoke of a thick plume of smoke in the area.
There was no word of casualties but opposition activists said ambulances were heard heading to the scene.
There are also reports of clashes in the Damascus suburb of Douma, where activists say four people have been killed.
Turkey's decision to reinforce its border with Syria comes two days after Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced a change in terms of its military engagement.
He told parliament that Syria was a "clear and present threat" and any "military element" that approached the Turkish border from Syria would be treated as a threat and a military target.
Extra troops have been sent to the area and Turkish TV has shown pictures of a small convoy of lorries carrying anti-aircraft guns into a military base near the border town of Yayladagi.
Other military vehicles have travelled to the border town of Reyhanli in Hatay province, reports say.
More than 33,000 refugees have fled Syria and have crossed the border into the province.
Turkish President Abdullah Gul is due to discuss the heightened tensions with Syria at a National Security Council meeting on Thursday.
Russia and other major powers are considering a proposal from UN envoy Kofi Annan for a national unity government to lead political change in Syria.
Moscow has agreed to back the plan which, according to Western diplomats, proposes a cabinet including members of the opposition and government, but no-one who would undermine its credibility.
The idea will be discussed on Saturday by the UN Action Group on Syria.
Although Western diplomats say President Bashar al-Assad would not be part of any unity government, his future role in Syria is not spelled out in Mr Annan's proposal.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Thursday that President Assad's future had to be decided through a "Syrian dialogue by the Syrian people themselves", adding that Saturday's Geneva conference could not dictate the terms of a unity government.
President Assad has described Syria as being in a "real state of war" and the UN's deputy envoy to Syria said on Wednesday that the violence "had reached or even surpassed" the levels seen in April when Mr Annan's ceasefire plan was agreed.
The UN says at least 10,000 people have been killed since pro-democracy protests began in March 2011. In June, the Syrian government reported that 6,947 Syrians had died, including at least 3,211 civilians and 2,566 security forces personnel.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Turkey sends anti-aircraft guns to Syrian border. [Online] (Updated 28 Jun 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news.php/1437415-Turkey-sends-anti-aircraft-guns-to-Syrian-border [Accessed 12th May 2013]
At 11:52:59 in EnglandOne of Britain's most wanted fugitives has been arrested on Spain's Costa Blanca....
At 11:50:39 in HeadlinesSyria has denied being responsible for two car bombs which killed 46 people in a Turkish border town....
At 11:47:28 in WalesA 69-year-old man has died after he was involved in a collision with a bus leaving a terminus....
At 11:41:59 in EnglandTeenagers taking part in the annual two-day Ten Tors challenge across Dartmoor in Devon have started to cross the finish line....
At 11:36:14 in Northern IrelandBus Eireann has said the "vast majority of its services" are not operating due to industrial action, including some cross-border s...
At 11:16:28 in EnglandCanterbury Cathedral has said it may have to close to visitors after it missed out on £10m of lottery funding. ...
At 11:04:30 in WalesPolice are investigating after a 21-year-old woman was seriously injured when she fell from a pedestrian bridge in Swansea city centre....
At 11:04:08 in EnglandI swiped my membership card, typed in my PIN and the computer screen on the dashboard told me I could drive off in a car I found parked in a...
At 11:03:37 in PoliticsNick Clegg only questioned plans to allow nursery staff to look after more children to shore up his position as Lib Dem leader, Michael Gove...
At 10:50:47 in EnglandA 17-year-old boy is fighting for his life after being attacked in Manchester city centre, police have said....
News In Other Categories
British scientists say they have developed a new type of wheat which could increase productivity by 30%....
Nick Clegg only questioned plans to allow nursery staff to look after more children to shore up his position as Lib Dem leader, Michael Gove...
More than half the schools in England's priority building scheme do not have guaranteed funding, it has emerged....
Bus Eireann has said the "vast majority of its services" are not operating due to industrial action, including some cross-border s...
One of Britain's most wanted fugitives has been arrested on Spain's Costa Blanca....
The introduction of energy smart meters in 30 million UK homes will be delayed for more than a year, the government has announced....