Syrian Troops, Rebels Clash Over Key Border Crossing With Turkey

Turkish Officials Evacuate Civilians as Fight Focuses on Rebel Supply Lines

by Jason Ditz, September 18, 2012

Significant clashes broke out along the Syrian border with the Turkish town of Akcakale, as rebels attempted to shore up their control of key supply routes into neighboring Turkey and regime forces sought to oust them from the area.

Rebels have held several other border areas with Turkey, which is openly backing certain rebel factions and housing the leadership of the Free Syrian Army (FSA).  Today’s fighting sought to add to their supply lines in Tel Abyad, a major border crossing.

Tolls from the clash inside Syria are impossible to confirm, but reports from inside Akcakale say that several stray bullets hit houses near the border, and at least one person was wounded. Rebels were said to have fled into the town and the Turkish government is urging civilians to evacuate.

Fighting in Syria has centered not only on the major cities but on border crossings, which has led to incidents of fighting spilling over the border into Lebanon and Turkey. Though the regime has mostly ousted rebels from Damascus, the city of Aleppo continues to be contested.

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