Turkish foreign minister cuts short China visit over Syrian border fire
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu (pictured) has cut short a trip to China because of Syrian border fire, which Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan described as “a clear violation” on Monday. Davutoglu was supposed to return later in the week.
REUTERS – Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu will cut short an official China visit and fly home Tuesday after Syrian forces fired shots into a refugee camp across the border, a report said.
Davutoglu, who was accompanying Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, will not join the Shanghai leg of the trip and instead return to Turkey later in the day, reported the Anatolia news agency.
On the Turkish border on Monday, shots fired from inside Syria wounded four Syrians and two Turkish staff at a refugee camp in the first case of Syrian fire hitting people on Turkish soil in the crisis.
The incident, on the eve of a visit by international envoy Kofi Annan to the refugee camps, angered Ankara, and Erdogan said it was a "clear violation" of the border between Turkey and Syria.
Annan was expected at the border at noon Tuesday, joined by US senators John McCain and Joe Lieberman.
Syria faced a deadline Tuesday to withdraw its forces from urban areas after more than a year of cracking down on opponents and bloody clashes, with a peace accord brokered by Annan hanging by a thread Tuesday.
Davutoglu has intensified diplomatic contacts with the international community and held telephone conversations with four members of the UN Security Council over the Syrian crisis -- the United States, Britain, China and Russia -- reported private NTV television.