Five Turkish soldiers and a civilian staff were killed and seven others were wounded in shelling by the Bashar Assad regime west of Saraqib in Syria's Idlib, marking an escalation in the tense situation.
The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) said Turkish forces retaliated to the attack and destroyed targets in the Idlib region. It added Syrian regime forces carried out the shelling despite being notified of the positions of the Turkish forces beforehand.
The TSK established a third observation point on Saturday, gaining control over the roads near the Syrian town of Saraqib in the Idlib countryside.
Idlib province is home to some 3 million people, many of them displaced from other parts of Syria in earlier bouts of violence. The United Nations has estimated that 390,000 Syrians have been displaced there over the past two months – 315,000 in December and 75,000 in January.
Turkey already hosts 3.5 million Syrian refugees, and the current wave of violence in Idlib has raised concerns about a new surge in displaced civilians fleeing toward the Turkish border.