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Middle East france 24

Video: The plight of Syria’s Turkmen refugees

© FRANCE 24 screen grab

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2016-02-04

Hundreds of thousands of Syrians uprooted by war have crossed the border into Turkey, and the flow shows no sign of ebbing. FRANCE 24’s Fatma Kizilboga spoke to members of the Turkmen community fleeing both regime forces and foreign fighters.

At least four thousand people have crossed the border in the last few days, among them children traumatized by five years of war. They have received food and blankets while waiting to be relocated to one of Turkey’s many refugee camps.

Many of the refugees are Turkmen, a Turkish-speaking minority based in northwest Syria, which is largely opposed to the regime of Bashar al-Assad. They bring harrowing tales of daily air strikes and rockets "falling like rain".

Some Turkmen fighters have brought their families across the border before returning to the battleground, to face a multitude of foes.

“We are fighting against foreign forces now – not Assad's army,” says Halic Srekin, a Turkmen commander, referring to the many foreign powers and fighters now involved in the Syrian conflict. “If it were only Assad, [the war] would have ended a long time ago.”

Click on the player above to watch our report.
 

Date created : 2016-02-04

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