World Bulletin/News Desk
Turkey has stationed armored vehicles and heavy weapons at its Syrian border after the government received a mandate last week from Parliament approving military operations in foreign countries. The move comes on the heels of a Syrian mortar attack which left five civilians dead in the southeastern province of Şanlıurfa on Oct. 3.
Two-hundred and fifty tanks were deployed in locations in the Şanlıurfa, Mardin and Gaziantep provinces after the government ordered the military's readiness for a possible clash with Syrian forces. Artillery units were also sent to the region.
Turkey scrambled two fighter planes to the border with Syria on Friday after a Syrian military helicopter bombed the Syrian border town of Azmarin, Reuters reported, citing an unnamed witness.
The deployment seeks to tighten security at the border with Syria, prevent infiltration by members of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and to represent a timely response to aggression from Syria that may be seen as attempting to drag Turkey into a full-scale war. Currently, the Turkish government has indicated no plans for an incursion into the conflict-hit country.
The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) have bolstered their presence along the 900-kilometer border with Syria in recent days and have been responding in kind to gunfire and shelling spilling across from the south, where Assad's forces have been battling opponents who control swathes of territory in the region. Last week, after deadly cross-border shelling, Ankara warned Assad that it will respond to each shell or mortar round that hits Turkish soil. Due to the largely flat terrain on the Turkish-Syrian border, the Land Forces Command has a larger share of responsibility in securing the border.
Air bases in Diyarbakır and Malatya are also on alert. Maintenance work at the Diyarbakır military airport was completed, allowing 15 F-16 airplanes sent from Çanakkale, Konya and Amasya to land at the airport with no complications on Wednesday. Military sources say these jets were sent in case of an attack by Syria. The number of military jets sent so far to the 2nd Air Force Command in Diyarbakır has risen to 55.
Chief of General Staff Gen. Necdet Özel vowed on Wednesday to give a “harsher response” to Syria if shelling from the neighboring country continues to spill over the border. Özel said the Turkish military had instantly launched retaliatory strikes after the Syrian shell struck Akçakale. "We responded, but if it continues we will respond with greater force," Özel said of the Syrian attack. He added that the Syrian military has suffered serious damage from the Turkish strikes.
Accompanied by Land Forces Commander Gen. Hayri Kıvrıkoğlu and 2nd Army Commander Gen. Galip Mendi, Özel arrived in Akçakale early on Wednesday after inspecting troops in other towns along the Syrian border. Özel also paid a visit to offer his condolences to Ömer Timuçin, whose wife, three children and relative were killed in the Oct. 3 incident, in which a total of five were left dead and eight wounded.
Tensions remain high between Turkey and Syria over the cross-border attacks after a second shell landed in Turkey's Hatay province on Oct. 9. Although Turkey has responded to Syrian aggression with retaliatory artillery fire, no casualties have been reported on the Syrian side apart from one injury. The incident represents the most serious cross-border escalation of the 18-month uprising in Syria.
Turkish government officials have criticized the central bank for maintaining high interest rates, arguing that they were limiting economic growth
Turkey's energy minister says policy of allowing Kurdish region oil sales contributed to normalization of Iraqi exports.
Turkey's Ministry of Foreign Affairs warns against travel to Algeria and Guinea due to deadly Ebola virus.
Turkish dailies on Thursday cover the funeral of 8 workers whose bodies were recovered from a flooded mine in Turkey's southern Anatolian town of Ermenek, as well as the testimony of Turkey’s ex-president in ‘lost trillion case’
Davutoglu sees the 'alienation' of Sunni politicans from the central government in Baghdad as the reason behind ISIL's advance in Iraq
Turkey and Algeria see big opportunities in joint-venture projects in Africa and around Turkey.
Vapor compression causes collapse inside the facility, killing 2 immediately and wounding 13 others.
Although Turkmenistan has allowed 300 trucks to pass through its customs gates, Iran is still not allowing more Turkish trucks to pass by.
Turkey to spend 800 million euros from EU funds for education to 2020 to allow 300,000 students to join in Erasmus Program.
Beyond Turkey’s borders, there is a crisis of legitimacy and regime failures, former U.S. Ambassador to Turkey Francis Ricciardone has said.
The 1992 massacre of 613 Azeri citizens is a bloody atrocity, a crime committed against humanity, participants say.
General John Allen and Turkish Foreign Ministry's Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioglu discussed ISIL in a meeting in Ankara.
Turkey and Algeria are to develop new energy projects in gas exploration, renewables and electricity transmission
The overuse of antibiotics causes resistance to the drugs - a major global threat, World Heath Organization says
The announcement by the municipality comes after the city assembly decided to include the project that sparked nationwide protests in 2013 in its 5-year planning strategy
Despite a more than 30 percent decrease in Brent crude oil prices in the last five months, the fall has not been reflected on Turkish gasoline prices directly because of the rising value of the U.S. dollar and taxes on gasoline