GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

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October 5, 2012

Turkey authorizes military to operate inside Syria

 

 

 

 

Turkey authorizes military operations inside Syria

AKCAKALE, Turkey (AP) — Turkey sanctioned further military action against Syria yesterdayand bombarded targets across the border with artillery for a second day, raising the stakes in a conflict that increasingly is bleeding outside Syrian territory.

Although both sides moved to calm tensions, Turkey's parliament overwhelmingly approved a bill allowing the military to conduct cross-border operations into Syria — making clear that Ankara has military options that do not involve its Western or Arab allies.

It was the most dramatic escalation in tensions between the countries, which were close allies before the revolt against Syrian President Bashar Assad began in March 2011. Over the past 18 months, however, Turkey has become one of the strongest critics of the Syrian regime, accusing it of savagery and massacres against the opposition.

The rebels who are trying to bring down Assad have used Turkey as their base, enraging a regime that accuses foreign countries of fomenting the unrest inside Syria.

The spark for the latest hostility was a mortar shell fired from Syria that slammed into a house in the Turkish border village of Akcakale on Wednesday, killing two women and three children.

Official: Mexico holds 2 in shooting of US Border Patrol agent

PHOENIX (AP) — Federal police have arrested two men who may be connected with the fatal shooting of a U.S. Border Patrol agent just north of the Mexico-Arizona border, a Mexican law enforcement official said yesterday.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to release the information, said it was unclear if there was strong evidence linking the men to the shooting of Agent Nicholas Ivie.

Ivie and two other agents were fired upon Tuesday in a rugged hilly area about five miles (eight kilometers) north of the border near Bisbee, Ariz., as they responded to an alarm that was triggered on one of the sensors that the government has installed along the border.

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