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Turkey says its troops have entered Syria in fight against Kurdish militias

23 January 2018

Some users began promoting the terrorist group on social media after the Turkish military launched an operation in Syria's northwestern Afrin region to establish security and stability along the country's borders and region as well as to eliminate PKK/KCK/PYD-YPG and Daesh terror groups.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned Kurds in Turkey not to take to the streets and protest the Turkish military's operations against a Kurdish-run enclave in Syria.

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

The YPG, which controls much of north-eastern Syria, is believed by Turkey to be an extension of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which has fought for Kurdish autonomy in Turkey for three decades.

Anadolu Agency said the troops pushed into Afrin on yesterday, a day after Turkish jets pounded Syrian Kurdish targets in the region.

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Also Sunday, rockets fired from northern Syria hit the Turkish town of Reyhanli, killing one and injuring 32, officials said. "We will take no step back", Erdogan said in a televised speech in Ankara, adding that Russian Federation had given its backing.

Egypt and Iran have condemned Turkey's attack. The group said that most were killed in Turkish air strikes over the weekend.

The launch of the ground campaign by the Turkish military on Sunday, alongside Syrian rebel factions under Ankara's tutelage, came on the second day of a military offensive called "Operation Olive Branch" by the Turkish government, with dozens of airstrikes hitting more than 150 targets in the Kurdish-dominated district from late on Saturday afternoon.

Turkey's incursion may heighten tensions with the United States, with which it has partnered but also quarreled. An earlier rocket attack on a different Turkish town reportedly inflicted no casualties. The terror group has also used Amanos Mountains to penetrate from Syria into Turkey.

Turkey and allied rebels also plan to "rebuild" local institutions and infrastructure, the official said, including in Afrin and in Manbij to the east.

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The militia forms a crucial part of a US-backed alliance battling Islamic State (IS) jihadists in Syria.

Iran, another Syria ally, called for a quick end to the operation "to prevent a deepening of the crisis" in Syria.

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.

Afrin is controlled by a Syrian Kurdish militia that Turkey views as part of the Kurdish insurgency in its southeast.

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Turkey says its troops have entered Syria in fight against Kurdish militias