Australian man dies in crossfire in Syria - reports

An Australian man has reportedly died in crossfire while helping at a refugee camp in Syria.

Melbourne man Roger Abbas, 23, had been providing aid at a camp on the border of Syria and Turkey, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

His family was informed of his death on Monday but they were not told when he died.

A Facebook post from Mehedin Abbas, who claimed to be Mr Abbas' cousin, said he died helping people.

He said Mr Abbas was a role model who was trying to give aid to the communities of Syria.

Islamic Society of Victoria vice president Baha Yehia told media Mr Abbas had not gone to Syria to join rebel forces fighting to depose the Syrian government.

Mr Abbas was a kickboxer but was not in Syria to fight, Mr Yehia said.

"He was gentle, and if you speak to anyone who fought him they would have seen that soft spot.

"A lot of people will miss him and think it's a tragedy, but a lot of people also think he died an honourable death while helping people out."

Mr Yehia said Mr Abbas' family may still be in shock over the death.

Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr said officials were seeking advice on the reports of the death.

"We want that confirmed" he told Sky News.

Senator Carr said it was unsafe for Australians to travel in Syria and those who were there should return home.

He also warned that it was against Australian law to raise money for military purposes or to offer military assistance to either side in Syria.

- nzherald.co.nz

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