Turkey bombs US-backed militants in northern Syria
Turkey has bombed US-backed Kurdish fighters in Afrin with impunity, just after Washington cited an alleged attack on the militants to target pro-government forces in Syria.
The Turkish army said in a statement on Friday that the overnight strikes destroyed 19 targets, including ammunition depots, shelters and gun positions, state-run Anadolu news agency said.
The so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said seven US-backed militants with the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) as well as two civilians were killed in the attacks.
Turkey began the attacks on January 20, but halted them after terrorists downed a Russian jet in the northwestern Syria province of Idlib, in order to allow Moscow to reinforce its air defense system.
The offensive is aimed at the YPG, which Turkey says bears ties with anti-Ankara militants.
The Turkish raid against Washington-backed forces comes two days after the US attacked pro-Damascus forces in the western Syrian province of Dayr al-Zawr, reportedly killing more than 100 of them as the fighters were engaged in an anti-Daesh operation.
Meanwhile, members of the United Nations Security Council failed to reach an agreement on a statement over the humanitarian situation in Syria.
Head of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, Mark Lowcock, had called for an immediate 30-day ceasefire in Syria.
He cited Eastern Ghouta near Damascus, which has been the scene of clashes between Syrian government forces and militants for weeks.
Russia’s UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia said Moscow supported a cessation of hostilities, but believed the plan was not realistic because terrorists were keeping up their attacks there.