Erdogan: Turkish Forces to Enter Afrin At Any Moment

Erdogan: Turkish Forces to Enter Afrin At Any Moment

Erdogan: Turkish Forces to Enter Afrin At Any Moment

The city of Manbij, also held by the YPG, was captured from ISIS in a joint US-Kurdish offensive.

On Jan. 20, Turkey launched the operation to clear YPG/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Afrin, northwestern Syria.

The Kurdish YPG is contesting this claim, however, with YPG spokesman Nouri Mahmoud saying that the Turks are more like 10 to 15 km away from Afrin, and that they definitely do not have the city surrounded.

The operation's media branch on Saturday said their new push had left Afrin's eastern side "exposed" to advancing fighters.

"We're in Afrin today".

Rami Abel Rahman, head of the Britain-based Observatory, said the aim was to besiege Afrin, cutting it off from other areas.

During the U.S. Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson's visit to Turkey on February 15-16, three mechanisms were established between Ankara and Washington with a view to contributing to normalizing bilateral relations and overcoming issues related to Syria, Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) and Iraq.

Nauert added that, "This is an introductory meeting where we can start to hopefully work out some of these issues".

It has been listed as a terrorist organisation by Turkey, the United States and the European Union.

The Turkish Army and pro-Ankara militias have kicked-off the most critical phase of their Olive Branch operation against Kurdish forces in Aleppo province - the assault to seize the city of Afrin, Al-Masdar News reports.

Since the beginning of the operation, the Turkish military and the Free Syrian Army have liberated 164 locations, including five town centers, 128 villages and 31 strategic areas.

Erdogan noted that a total of 815 square kilometres (506 square miles) have been cleared from the terrorists so far.

The operation is being carried out under the framework of Turkey's rights based on worldwide law, UN Security Council resolutions, its self-defence rights under the UN charter and respect for Syria's territorial integrity, it said.

The military also said only terror targets are being destroyed and that "utmost care" is being taken to avoid harming civilians.

"Then we will ensure security there and send our [displaced] brothers of Afrin back to their homes".

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