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Amnesty International concerned with Turkish shelling of Syrian territory

February 24, 2016, 20:14 UTC+3 LONDON

The organization fears that "such indiscriminate" air strikes will cause huge civilian casualties

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LONDON, February 24 /TASS/. Amnesty International, an international non-governmental organization, is seriously concerned with Turkey’s shelling of the Syrian territory. It fears that such indiscriminate air strikes will cause huge civilian casualties, Tirana Hassan, Amnesty International’s Crisis Response director, told TASS on Wednesday.

We did not document the consequences but we heard and saw numerous shells fired at Syria from the Turkish territory at the time when we were visiting the Turkish-Syrian border, the expert, fresh from her trip to the region, said.

We are seriously concerned with any indiscriminate artillery strikes, which can hit regions densely populated with civilians, she added.

Earlier on Wednesday, the Russian Defense Ministry asked international organizations to give an official assessment of the Turkish shelling of the Syrian territory.

"Turkey is using large-caliber artillery guns to shell [Syrian] populated localities located near the border with [Turkey]. Instead of accusing us of indiscriminate strikes without any proof, Amnesty International, the Human Rights Watch, Doctors without Borders and other international organizations should give their official assessment of the criminal actions of the Turkish armed forces," Russian Defense Ministry Spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov said.

On February 13, it became known that Turkey was shelling the Kurdish-populated areas in Syria from heavy guns. Turkey has officially recognized the facts of shelling the Syrian territory, while Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Ankara would go ahead with the bombardments.

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