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Turkey-Syria fighting escalates war's new chapter

Video Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on February 10, 2020 - Duration: 01:18s

Turkey-Syria fighting escalates war's new chapter

Artillery strikes between Turkish and Syrian government troops have killed at least five Turkish soldiers, with casualties among the Syrians not immediately known.

The open fighting between the two militaries comes after attempts by Russia to mediate appear to have failed.

Matthew Larotonda reports.

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Turkey-Syria fighting escalates war's new chapter

Open fighting between Syrian government troops and Turkish forces has flared again, once kept at bay by mediation from Russia.

At least five Turkish soldiers were killed on Monday (February 10) when Syrian artillery hit their outpost in the northwest, according to the Turkish defense ministry.

More were wounded.

Meanwhile rebels backed by Turkey's own artillery are said to have attacked the Syrian government positions.

It's not immediately clear how many casualties may be on the Syrian side.

Turkish sources say it was the Syrians who struck first.

Video obtained by Reuters is believed to show a Turkish helicopter evacuating their wounded.

The fighting between these two militaries, Turkey a NATO member, is the latest in a dramatic new chapter in Syria's civil war.

Russia had been keeping the two sides apart, more or less, after the United States withdrawal left a power vacuum in the conflict.

That all but collapsed last week when eight Turks were killed in shelling by Syrian forces, prompting a massive retaliation of air strikes against them and troop buildup.

Forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad are on the offensive trying to take the last rebel stronghold in Syria.

Turkey says it can't handle any more refugees streaming across its border.

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