March 29th, 2012
09:59 AM ET

Trying to clear Syrian landmines from Turkey's border

Syrian volunteers are trying to clear landmines that Turkish authorities say the Syrian army began planting along stretches of the border earlier this winter, report Ivan Watson and Yesim Comert who went to see the effort in Altinozu, Turkey.

Amid the olive groves of Turkey just a stone's throw away from the Syrian border, one volunteer has hidden away several Styrofoam boxes.

Their contents are deadly: a dozen unexploded antipersonnel mines.

Mazen Hajisa took one out and brushed dirt off its green molded plastic case. It was about the size of a soup bowl and stamped with Cyrillic letters.

Hajisa pointed at a raised black cross on the top of the device.

"If you put pressure on this trigger," he said, "It will explode."

After showing CNN his boxes full of landmines, Hajisa gingerly carried them back into the underbrush where he had stored them.

The volunteer de-miner did not know how to defuse the deadly little devices. He said he didn't know of any official to whom he could turn over the mines, seeming not to trust the Turks.

"I hide them here because I don't know where else to put them," he said.

Read Ivan and Yesim's story here

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Filed under: Middle East • Syria • Turkey
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. the wise

    Stop supporing zionist aggression.

    March 29, 2012 at 10:01 pm | Reply

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