Turkey bombs US-backed militants in northern Syria

Adjust Comment Print

The airstrikes destroyed 19 targets including ammunition depots, shelters and gun positions, the armed forces said in a statement without specifying when the raids were conducted.

According to Turkish media, Ankara's aerial campaign was briefly halted after Russia closed the airspace over Afrin, as a result of the downing of a Russian jet in neighbouring Idlib province.

Turkey insists that its operation in Afrin is "fully in line with worldwide law", saying that the presence of the Syrian Kurdish YPG in the area is a "security threat" to the country.

A senior security official in Turkey, however, accused the SDF of anti-Turkish propaganda, saying it was "nonsense" that an IS militant would say they were going to Turkey, and that Ankara was taking every step to eliminate IS militants in Turkey.

The latest strikes are the first by the Turkish air force in almost a week.


The US claimed that it launched the attack to protect SDF militants whose ranks are filled with YPG fighters.

The Turkish military captured five more villages controlled by the People's Protection Units (YPG) on February 9 as part of "Operation Olive Branch" being carried out with the Free Syrian Army (FSA) after Turkey resumed air strikes following a six-day break.

Meanwhile, members of the United Nations Security Council failed to reach an agreement on a statement over the humanitarian situation in Syria.

Earlier, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported that between 15,000 to 30,000 civilians have been internally displaced in Afrin because of the operation.

He cited Eastern Ghouta near Damascus, which has been the scene of clashes between Syrian government forces and militants for weeks.

Comments