Sunday, 25 February, 2018


Syrian Kurdish YPG says prevented Turkish forces from crossing into Afrin

Syrian opposition fighters drive through Syria in front of Turkish troops near the Syria border at Hassa.-AFP Syrian opposition fighters drive through Syria in front of Turkish troops near the Syria border at Hassa.-AFP
Bennie Garza | 23 January, 2018, 20:44

M - Turkish ground troops have crossed into northern Syria as part of a major offensive to push out Kurdish militia, which Turkey regards as terrorists, BBC reported.

Two of those hurt were badly injured, Huseyin Sanverdi, the mayor of Reyhanli, a small town situated in Hatay province on the Syrian border, told NTV television.

The claim is completely false, which aims to mislead the public through a perception operation, the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on talking to the media, said earlier.

The Turkish attack on Kurdish forces in Afrin will likely cast a shadow over the upcoming Syrian National Dialogue Congress, which is being brokered by Russia, Turkey and Iran for a political settlement of the Syrian conflict.

Washington has called the terrorist group a "reliable ally" in its fight against Daesh in Syria even though its mother organization, the PKK, is listed as a terrorist group by Turkey, the USA, and the European Union, having waged a terror campaign against Turkey for more than 30 years, killing almost 40,000 people.

The Pentagon says it limits its assistance to the YPG to regions where ISIS is nearby.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.

The YPG (Syrian Kurdish People's Protection Units) is part of a US-backed alliance with a number of ethnic Arab militias called the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). An earlier rocket attack on a different Turkish town reportedly inflicted no casualties.

The Turkish Armed Forces have not suffered losses during the Operation Olive Branch, the Turkish media cited the country's Prime Minister Binali Yildirim as saying January 22.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had repeatedly vowed that Turkey will root out the "nests of terror" in Syria of the YPG, which Ankara accuses of being the Syrian offshoot of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

Erdogan said Afrin was a predominantly Arab area and that Turkey was determined to return it to its rightful owners.

Turkey's state-run news agency says Turkish ground troops have entered a Kurdish-held enclave in northern Syria and are advancing with Turkish-backed Syrian opposition forces.

Ghasemi called on Turkey to end this offensive operation immediately.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said a total of 21 civilians - including six children - had been killed in the operation. Egypt blasted the operation as a violation of Syria's sovereignty.

But as well as a complex military task, Turkey has to wage a sensitive diplomatic campaign to avoid alienating allies and provoking foes.

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