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Syria, UN, NATO respond to Turkey attack

NATO ambassadors hold an emergency meeting on Wednesday night to discuss a mortar strike from Syria that killed five civilians in Turkey. It's a rare meeting under article 4 of the NATO charter which provides for consultations when one member feels its territorial integrity, independence or security is under threat. The 28 member alliance released a statement demanding an immediate end to "aggressive acts" and accusing Syria of "flagrant violations of international law". The UN also responded to the attacks, with a spokesman for Secretary General Ban Ki- Moon urging both sides to keep open channels of dialogue. Ban issued a statement calling on the Syrian government to respect the territorial integrity of its neighbours and warned the 18 month conflict in Syria is increasingly harming other countries. In Damascus, Syrian state TV hosted an interview with Minister of Information Omran Zoabi who offered his condolences to the Turkish victims. Zoabi said Syrian authorities were investigating the attack, and reiterated the government position that -- what he called -- armed groups of terrorists are behind unrest in the region. The mortar strike, which killed a woman and four children from the same family, struck Turkey's south-eastern border region on Wednesday. Turkey responded by firing at targets in Syria, and the attacks have continued into Thursday - killing a number of Syrian soldiers according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

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