Syrian Kurds wait at the border with Turkey in Suruc
Suruc - AFP
Hundreds of Syrians from the region of Kobane were on Friday waiting at the fence on the Syria-Turkey border as clashes continued between Kurdish fighters and Islamist jihadists, an AFP photographer reported.
Over 1,000 Syrians were standing and sitting beside the fence on the Syrian side of the border, carefully watched by the Turkish troops and police on the other side.
Their relatives on the Turkish side of the frontier meanwhile waved their hands and cried in despair, the photographer added.
Mainly Kurdish Kobane had been re-captured by Kurdish fighters from Islamic State (IS) jihadists in January and some residents had then cautiously returned to the town from their refuge in Turkey.
But IS launched a surprise attack on Kobane on Thursday, staging three suicide bombings and re-entering the town. According to a monitoring group, up to 120 civilians were killed in the ensuing clashes.
The AFP correspondent said the sound of continuing clashes could still be heard in Kobane from the Turkish side of the border.
Meanwhile, the Mursitpinar border gate on the Turkish side of the border was not open.
But injured victims of the violence were being allowed by the Turkish authorities to pass through at spaces in the border fence several kilometres away from the actual gate.
This appeared due to security reasons, out of fears that snipers could target the actual border gate, the correspondent said.
Turkey on Thursday angrily rejected suggestions that IS militants had passed into Kobane from its territory, saying video footage proved that they had come from inside Syria.
Ankara has always vehemently denied claims of Turkish collusion with IS and in turn accused the West of not doing enough to help with the burden of Syrian refugees, 1.8 million of whom are living in Turkey.
But the co-chair of Turkey's opposition pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) Figen Yuksekdag said there was "lots of proof" that IS jihadists had been going back and forth across the border.