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File photo of a Turkish pilot aboard a military plane. AP/Press Association Images

Turkey scrambles fighter jets to Syrian border

Officials say military movement is in response to the activity of Syrian helicopters.

TURKEY HAS ISSUED a statement saying that it has scrambled six fighter jets to its border with Syria in response to three incidents of Syrian helicopters flying close to that border.

The military has not reported any direct confrontation.

Today’s announcement comes in the wake of the highly controversial crashing of a Turkish military plane in the Mediterranean, which Syria claims to have brought the plane down after it violated its airspace. Turkish officials responded by saying that the jet briefly entered Syrian airspace but was shot down in international airspace.

The incident heightened already strained relations between the neighbours and former allies.

In the wake of the plane incident, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc said that Turkey has no intention of going to war with anyone, but that it retains its right to retaliate against hostile acts.

- Additional reporting by the AP

Annan warns ‘history will judge’ the world’s failure on Syria >

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