Panetta: Syria clash with Turkey may escalate

6:10 PM, Oct 6, 2012   |    comments
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LIMA, Peru (AP) - Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says he's worried that border clashes between Syria and Turkey could escalate and spread to neighboring countries.

Panetta says the U.S. is using its diplomatic channels to relay concerns about the continued exchange of artillery fire between the two countries in the hopes that the conflict will not broaden.

His comments during a trip to Peru come on the heels of warnings from Turkey's prime minister that his country is not far from war with Syria. Recep Tayyip Erdogan (REH'-jehp TY'-ihp UR'-doh-wahn) is cautioning Damascus not to test Turkey's "limits and determination" and says Ankara is not bluffing in saying it won't tolerate such acts.

Turkey and Syria again traded artillery fire Saturday as rebels clashed with President Bashar Assad's forces near the border.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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