ISTANBUL, Turkey, March 22 (UPI) -- Turkish forces have tightening the border with Syria to prevent PKK infiltrators from crossing.
The Turkish border security units and gendarmerie forces involved with the action are concerned Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, guerrillas could join the ranks of legitimate Syrian refugees fleeing the rising violence in their country.
Turkish intelligence believes the number of PKK terrorists in Syria now exceeds 1,500, with most based in the predominantly Kurdish regions of Afrin, Amude and Derik, and that many had earlier trained in Kandil, a major PKK camp in northern Iraq, Today's Zaman newspaper reported Wednesday.
Turkish security forces recently received intelligence from some Syrian sources that PKK militants were intending to seek refuge in Turkey by pretending to be oppressed Syrian nationals, after which Turkish authorities doubled the number of gendarmes and police officers along the border with Syria. The Marxist and nationalist PKK has been fighting for autonomy for Turkey's largely Kurdish southeast since 1984.