Turkey closes border gate on Syria for 'security reasons'

Turkish customs minister said the Yayladagi border crossing on Turkish-Syrian frontier was closed temporarily

Turkey closes border gate on Syria for 'security reasons'

World Bulletin/News Desk

Turkish Minister of Customs and Trade Hayati Yazici said Tuesday that the Yayladagi Customs Gate on Turkish-Syrian border was closed temporarily for security reasons.      

In a written statement, Yazici said the border crossing was closed to prevent the perpetrators of the Reyhanli blast on May 18 from fleeing.      

The twin car bombings in Reyhanli town killed at least 51 people and wounded many others. The attacks were the deadliest spill over in Turkey from violence in Syria since the uprising began in March 2011.      

Yazici reminded that the customs services would continue for a period of one month at Yayladagi, saying that the border gate might reopen if planned improvements to the gate were completed by then.  

Yazici said the Yayladagi gate, some 90 km (55 miles) from Reyhanli, would remain closed for a month, during which only Turkish citizens arriving from Syria or non-Syrians transiting through Turkey would be allowed to cross.

Nobody would be allowed to cross from Turkey into Syria.

A Turkish official in the region said there would now be time to station bomb-detecting equipment at the crossing.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 22 Mayıs 2013, 14:19

Muhammed Öylek