VIDEO - A large Turkish flag placed on top of an abandoned building on the Syrian side of the border with Turkey was removed Thursday by President Bashar Assad's troops and replaced with a Syrian flag.
Eyewitness reported seeing Syrian soldiers climb to the top of the 3-floor building and switch the flags.
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Meanwhile, media outlets reported that Syrian soldiers were patrolling in military vehicles and on foot around the border village of Khirbet al-Jouz. The Local Coordinating Committees, which track the Syrian protest movement, said residents reported tanks had entered the village and snipers were spotted on rooftops.
"The Syrian army has some 40 tanks and dozens of armored vehicles patrolling the town, and several houses have been bombarded," a local resident was quoted as saying.
An Al-Jazeera reporter stationed on the Turkish side of the border said on Thursday he spotted tanks and ground troops in the Syrian town on the other side of the border.
Watch Syrian soldiers remove Turkish flag
More than 11,000 Syrians are housed or seeking shelter in Turkish refugee camps, including 600 who crossed over on Thursday, the Turkish Red Crescent said.
On Wednesday, Syria's foreign minister, Walid Moallem, lashed out at European governments for threatening a new round of sanctions and accused the West of trying to sow chaos and conflict in the Arab nation.
Moallem also reiterated President Assad's call for national dialogue and spoke of democracy within months – a bold assertion after more than four decades of iron-fisted rule by the Assad family and months of bloody reprisals.
AP contributed to this report
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