More than 100,000 Syrian Kurds flee to Turkey

22nd September 2014, Comments 0 comments

More than 100,000 Syrian Kurds have fled into Turkey over the past few days, escaping advancing Islamic State jihadists who seized dozens of villages near a strategic border town, officials said Monday.

Turkey's emergencies ministry, the AFAD, said the latest figure was 104,000 people and that authorities were clamping down at the border.

"The border is open, but only at one place at Mursitpinar, for better organisation of crossings," an AFAD official said.

"A single point has been opened for displaced Syrians, so that we can do identity control and give first aid, vaccinating people if necessary," the official said.

The UN refugee agency, the UNHCR, on Saturday said that as many as hundreds of thousands of refugees might flee the fighting.

Syrian Kurds were leaving the area around Ain al-Arab, or Kobane, as the town is known in Kurdish, which is under attack by IS forces.

Until now, Kobane, the third biggest Kurdish population centre in Syria, had been relatively safe and had taken in 200,000 people displaced from elsewhere in Syria.

© 2014 AFP

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