Over 160,000 Syrian refugees flood Turkey

Indo Asian News Service

Ankara, Sep 26 (IANS) More than 160,000 Syrian refugees have entered Turkey to escape the extremist Islamic State (IS) militants in northern Syria since last Friday, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Friday.

The number of Syrian Kurds who have flooded to Turkey since last week has reached 160,335, Davutoglu said at the meeting of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) in Turkish capital Ankara, adding that Turkey has taken steps that no other countries in the world have taken for those from Kobani, a Kurdish town across Turkish province Sanliurfa on the Syrian side of the border that is home to some 400,000 people.

At least 105 villages around Kobani in northern Syria have been captured by IS forces since mid-September, according to the data from UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Davutoglu stressed Turkey's stance on the fight against IS in Syria, saying that Turkey would support any initiative or operation that brought an absolute solution to the terrorism problem, and would take the necessary steps if a palliative approach was adopted regarding the issue, Xinhua reported.

Earlier Sunday, the UNHCR said in a statement that it had stepped up its response to help Turkey provide aid to the Syrian refugees who have crossed into Turkey since Friday.

Turkey opened its frontier to cope with a rush of Syrian civilians from the Syrian border town of Ain al-Arab Friday.

The Turkish authorities once refused the Syrians fleeing clashes between IS militants and Kurdish fighters to enter its soil, fearing its disability to shelter more refugees from the Syrian conflict.