Syrian army recaptures border town to stem refugee flood

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The Independent Online

Syrian troops have recaptured a town on the border with Jordan in an apparent attempt by the regime to stem the flood of refugees fleeing the civil war, according to anti-government activists.

Hundreds of Syrian soldiers backed by 20 tanks assaulted Tel Chehab, according to local rebels and the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. The rebels, who had been in control of Tel Chehab for several months, reportedly fought back but were pushed out.

Meanwhile Syria's foreign ministry rebuked the Egyptian President, Mohamed Morsi, yesterday, saying his calls for President Bashar al-Assad to step down constituted "blatant interference in Syrian internal affairs and an explicit attack on the Syrian people's right to choose their own future without any foreign interference."

The rebuke came after Mr Morsi said earlier this week: "I tell the Syrian regime that there is still a chance to halt the bloodshed … Don't listen to the voices that tempt you to stay because you will not be there for much longer."

Activists reported violence in many other parts of the country yesterday, including three areas of Damascus and the Palestinian refugee camp of Yarmouk in the capital.