Syria attacks rebel base

Syrian warplanes bombed a rebel headquarters near the Turkish border on Monday, missing their target but sending hundreds of Syrians fleeing across the frontier.

The attack on the Free Syrian Army base in Atima, 2 km from the border, came a day before Turkish and Nato officials were due to start assessing where to station surface-to-air missiles close to the 900 km border.

Turkey, a major supporter of insurgents fighting to oust President Bashar al-Assad, has repeatedly scrambled jets along the joint border and responded in kind when Syrian shells have landed inside Turkey.

But Ankara, rejecting Syrian complaints that the Patriots were “provocative”, stressed that they would be used only to defend the Turkish territory, not to create a no-fly zone inside Syria that rebels want to neutralise Assad’s massive air power.

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