Around 1,000 Syrian refugees have crossed the border into Turkey over the past 24 hours, a Turkish official said.
The total number of registered refugees in the country has now reached 14,000. "Around 1,000 people crossed the border from Syria to Turkey in the last 24 hours," the official said. "We expect this to continue as long as the operation goes on in Idlib."
Authorities expect 50,000 people will arrive in total, forcing provinces near the Turkish border to prepare for an emergency wave of refugees.
Accommodation for the refugees is being set up in the southern provinces of Hatay, Kilis, Gaziantep, and Sanliurfa. There are already seven tent cities in Hatay, where some 13,500 Syrians are housed.
Preparations are also underway to establish a tent city in the Islahiye district of Gaziantep, with a capacity to absorb 10,000 people. "We plan to set up 2,000 tents. The Turkish Red Crescent (Kizilay) will deliver blankets and tents," Gaziantep governor Erdal Ata told the Turkish newspaper Today's Zaman.
Syrian state media announced that the regime's forces had cleared "armed terrorists" from the northern city of Idlib and said supporters of Syrian President Bashir al-Assad would hold demonstrations across the country.
"Security and peace of mind returned to the city of Idlib after authorities cleared its neighborhoods of armed terrorist groups which had terrorized citizens," the state news agency Sana reported.
On the one-year anniversary of the uprising, the Syrian army is strengthening its offensive against rebel strongholds, reclaiming the flashpoint city of Homs, which has been under siege for weeks, and the southern town of Deraa, where the rebellion began.