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Report: Fighting erupts in northeast Syria

Associated Press
In this Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012 photo, a group of Free Syrian Army fighters carry a wounded comrade to cover in the town of Harem, Syria. Despite two weeks of attacking a Roman-era citadel in which pro-Assad militia are dug in, the rebels failed to secure the town. (AP Photo/Mustafa Karali)
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ISTANBUL (AP) — Syrian regime forces on Thursday battled opposition rebels trying to take control of a region in the far northeastern corner of the country, sending refugees fleeing across the Turkish border, Turkey's state-run agency reported.

Turkish authorities meanwhile, inspected the cargo of a Syria-bound plane from Armenia to make sure it was not carrying military equipment.

The clashes broke out in the Rasulayn region of al-Hasakah province, a few hundred meters (yards) from the Turkish border town of Ceylanpinar, the Anadolu Agency said.

Several Syrians fled to Ceylanpinar seeking refuge from the fighting and at least eight wounded people were being treated in Turkish hospitals.

Schools in Ceylanpinar were closed for the day as the military increased security measures. Residents were being warned to stay away from the border.

Dogan news agency video showed people running for shelter in panic as a piece of shrapnel from the fighting reportedly landed on the grounds of the hospital in Ceylanpinar.

Elsewhere in Turkey, a Syria-bound Armenian plane landed in the city of Erzurum to allow Turkish authorities to search its cargo.

Last month, another plane from Armenia landed in Turkey under an agreement with Turkish authorities, who later said the cargo consisted of aid and could continue on to Syria. Turkey also forced a Syrian passenger plane traveling from Moscow to Damascus to land in Ankara on suspicion that equipment it was carrying was military gear. Russia, a backer of Syrian President Bashar Assad, said the equipment consisted of spare parts for radar systems.

The civil war in Syria has killed more than 36,000 people since an uprising against the Syrian regime began in March 2011. More than 111,000 Syrians are being sheltered in refugee camps in Turkey.

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