Residents fled from a northwestern Syrian town Wednesday as government forces surrounded it in anticipation of a military strike against dissidents, the Wall Street Journal reported. The government vowed to strike back against the town of Jisr al-Shoghour, after it claimed 120 police and security forces were killed there earlier this week.
While many of town's 65,000 residents, have fled north, with some even crossing into Turkey, anti-government activists and defected soldiers vowed to stay and fight.
"We want to gather in Jisr al-Shoghour and wait for the army to arrive," said a 21-year old Syrian army defector. "We want to resist, us and the other soldiers here."
Nadim Houry, a Human Rights Watch senior researcher on the Middle East stated that it remained unclear "who is opposing the Syrian security forces and what is the extent of this armed opposition."
Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Erdogan said he would accept fleeing refugees. "It is out of the question for us to shut down the border crossings," he said. An estimated 400 people already have crossed into Turkey.
Prompted by the escalating violence, Britain and France vowed to draft a United Nations Security Council resolution condemning Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad's repressive crackdown. British Prime Minister David Cameron told Parliament it will demand accountability and humanitarian action and the United States has endorsed the proposal.
"We believe that such a resolution will bring added pressure on Assad's regime and advance the international community's efforts to end the brutal repression on Syrian people," said State Department spokesman Mark Toner.
Russia and China, however, indicated they will oppose any UN declaration opposing Assad, Radio Free Europe/ Radio Liberty reported. "The Council should have the goal to solve problems by political means and not to create the conditions for another armed conflict," Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Tuesday.