September 29, 2016 / 2:02 PM / 10 months ago

Turkey to complete wall along Syrian border by next spring - defence minister

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Turkey's Defence Minister Fikri Isik answers a question during an interview with Reuters in Ankara, Turkey, August 5, 2016.Tumay Berkin

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey will have completely sealed its 911-km (566-mile) border with Syria by next spring when it finishes the construction of a wall, Defence Minister Fikri Isik said on Thursday.

"We want the 911-km border with Syria to be closed, we will have it completely closed by spring 2017," Isik told reporters in the border town of Karkamis, in comments broadcast live on Turkish television.

Officials have said the wall aims to stop illegal migration from Syria into Turkey, which already hosts nearly 3 million Syrian refugees.

Reporting by Ece Toksabay; Editing by Nick Tattersall

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