Turkish diplomatic and security sources denied reports stating that dozens of Syrian refugees including women and children were killed as they tried to cross into Turkish territory in order to escape the fighting in the areas that they inhabited in Syria.
The sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that these allegations were not true and that they are merely attempts to discredit the role played by Turkey in receiving Syrians fleeing areas of conflict in their country. The sources stressed that Turkey’s doors to refugees from Syria and Iraq are open, just as they were open previously in similar circumstances. They also stressed that Turkey hosts nearly 3 million refugees, including 2,700,000 or more Syrians and tries to provide them with a decent life despite not receiving adequate aid from either the European Union or the international community in general.
The sources pointed out that this is one of the principles of Turkish policy in dealing with humanitarian crises and that Turkey does not close its doors in the faces of those fleeing to it because of the tragic situation in the areas of conflict in their country. Rather, the sources added, it makes every effort to provide aid to needy people in Syria and Iraq on the basis that they are from neighbouring countries.
Security sources confirmed that troops stationed on the borders of Turkey do not shoot directly at those trying to cross the border and only shoot warning shots. They also arrest smugglers and those trying to enter Turkey illegally whilst Syrians coming from areas where there is conflict are given special treatment.