ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkey’s military deployed armoured vehicles and heavy weaponary to the border with Syria on Saturday, near a crossing that has seen intense fighting between rebels and government forces, local media said.
The deployment is reportedly in an area where earlier this week Turkish civilians were wounded when stray bullets and shelling crossed the border from the Syrian province of al-Raqqa.
CNN Turk television said artillery fire had landed close to the Turkish border overnight, causing panic among local residents.
The Turkish army moved three Howitzers and one anti-aircraft weapon to the border, the channel said.
Turkey, a member of NATO, has conducted a number of troop deployments in recent months along its 911-km (566-mile) border with Syria, where rebels are fighting to topple President Bashar al-Assad.
Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan has been an outspoken critic of Assad’s handling the uprising that has killed an estimated 27,000 people since it began as a peaceful protest in March 2011.
(Reporting By Ayla Jean Yackley; Editing by Robin Pomeroy)