UN Security Council condemns Syrian shelling of Turkey

Photo: UN Security Council condemns Syrian shelling of Turkey / Turkey

The UN Security Council condemned late Thursday in the "strongest terms the shelling from the Syrian territory of the Turkish town of Alcakale," which killed five Turkish people, all of whom were women and children, dpa reported.

"Members of the Security Council expressed their sincere condolences to the families of the victims and the government of Turkey," the council said in a statement that was read by its president, Guatemala's Ambassador Gert Rosenthal, following hours of negotiations behind closed doors.

The council said the incident "highlighted the grave impact the crisis in Syria has on the security of its neighbors and on regional peace and security."

"The council demands that such violations of international law stop immediately and are not repeated," it said. It asked the Syrian government to respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of its neighbors.

"The members of the Security Council call for restraint" from both parties, Rosenthal said.

Diplomats said earlier Thursday that Russia had objected to parts of the statement and proposed that both the Syrian government and the armed opposition be condemned in the statement. But the statement read by Rosenthal condemned Syria and called on all parties in the conflict to show restraint.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon earlier Thursday called for Syria and Turkey to make efforts to ease the tension along their joint border, a UN spokesman said.

Martin Nesirky said Ban has "repeatedly made clear his concerns about a spill over in the Syrian crises into neighboring countries as occurred yesterday (Wednesday) with Turkey."

"The risk of a regional conflict and the threat to international peace and security are also increasing" with recent developments, including the "atrocious" bombing in Aleppo that killed dozens of people, Nesirky said.

He said the UN-Arab League envoy for Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, had contacted the governments in Damascus and Ankara to urge restraint.

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