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Friday, January 13, 2012

"Freedom Convoys" to Syria blocked in Turkey and Jordan

From Gulf Daily News:

Authorities prevented a convoy of 200 opposition activists yesterday from entering Syria via Turkey with medical aid for victims of the ongoing uprising.

Some of the activists said they had travelled from as far afield as the US and western Europe in order to join the so-called 'Freedom Convoy' which included five buses and several cars.

Brandishing Syrian flags, the convoy was initially stopped by Turkish police at a lay-by, 15km from Oncupinar customs gate in the southeastern Turkish town of Kilis.

And a delegation from the convoy which approached the border was later turned back by Syrian officials and returned empty-handed.

"Our delegation was denied entry and so we have decided to stay here until we reach a decision all together," said Dalati Bilal, a 42-year-old Syrian-American businessman who had travelled to Turkey from California.

"If the Syrians refuse (to let us in) then we will just camp here until they allow us to.

"The whole idea of the convoy is to support the Syrian people inside, to show that we are with them even if it's so little what we are doing. They are dying for freedom."

Zeyna Adi, one of the organisers, said a second "Freedom Convoy" which had been hoping to enter Syria via Jordan was cancelled at "the last minute" after being blocked by the authorities there.
Curiously, no one seems to be blaming Turkey and Jordan for stopping them.