Opposition Remains Silent
 After Turkish Border Guards Kill Fleeing Syrians

Syrian activists protest the murder of several Syrian refugees by Turkish military while attempting to illegally cross the border

Activists in the city of Aleppo organized a protest on Monday “against the violations of the Turkish army on the Syrian border", after the military was responsible for the deaths of several Syrians over the past few days, with Syria’s official opposition remaining silent on the incidents.


Protestors carried placards written in Turkish, demanding the opening of the border crossings to Syrians "fleeing the barrels of Assad and the knives of ISIS", while also addressing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan: "Mr. Erdogan, your guests died before they entered your country".


At the time of writing this report, revolutionary military factions which control the border, as well as the Syrian National Coalition, have not yet commented on the incidents.

Media activist Fouad al-Hallak, from the city of Aleppo, questioned why Syrian media continues to ignore the issue. "Why the fear of criticizing the Turkish government? Or is Syrian blood just so cheap?" he pondered.


The Aleppo News Network documented the death of Alaa Mohammed Jolo on the second day of Eid, when he was shot by Turkish border guards in the Hawar-Killis area, while trying to cross illegally with his 2-year-old child.


The Network quoted eyewitnesses saying that a Turkish soldier shot Jolo in the head. The Network published a photo of the martyr lying on the ground, adding that at least 20 Turkish soldiers, including an officer, dispersed people and then left, leaving Jolo’s body behind.


In a similar incident, the 2-year old Farah Surour from the city of Raqqa was killed in the area near the Killis border crossing. The child was killed by two shots – in the head and the heart – and buried in the Turkish city of Urfa, according to the Network.


On Monday night, five women were injured after stepping on a landmine near the town of Tal Abyad, while attempting to reach the Turkish city of Akçakale.


Syrian judge Ibrahim Hussein denied that the closure of the border under the pretext of protecting the Turkish territory is a justification for the gendarmerie to fire on fugitives, stressing that neither Turkish nor the international law allows this.


In an interview with Enab Baladi, Hussein added that international law requires the protection of people fleeing from war, and it is not allowed to try them on charges of illegal entry, given the circumstances that prevail inside their country.


Scores of Syrians have been killed on Turkey’s borders since the beginning of the revolution, with Ankara issuing the closure of the main border crossings since March, citing "security reasons".


The liberated areas in northern Syria suffer from bombing campaigns of explosive barrels and guided missiles. Areas witnessing clashes between ISIS and the Kurdish units in the northeast of the country have also witnessed a policy of displacement, leading Syrians to flee in large numbers over the Turkish border.

The number of Syrian refugees in Turkey has exceeded 1.8 million, according to the latest United Nations reports.

Translated and edited by The Syrian Observer

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