Syrian television claims the country’s military has taken full control of Jisr al-Shughour and chased out what it called armed terrorists.
The assault on the northwest town is the latest action by Syrian armed forces to crush demands for political freedom.
Locals say most of Jisr al-Shughour’s 50,000 people have fled, after tanks and helicopters shelled the town.
With foreign media banned accounts are difficult to verify but the UN says more than 5,000 Syrian refugees have already crossed into Turkey.
The United States has accused the Syrian government of creating a humanitarian crisis.
One refugee said, “They are targeting homes and yesterday gunmen targeted us. All these people will not survive because they burnt all their crops. Now it’s become sectarian for sure.”
Turkey has welcomed the refugees, setting up temporary camps. With another 10,000 Syrians sheltering near the border The Red Crescent is preparing a fourth camp to house the anticipated influx.