TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Eight Turkish soldiers were killed and 13 wounded on Thursday in the ongoing Turkish aggression against Syria’s northwestern region of Afrin, a report said.
The death toll, released by the Turkish military staff in two separate statements, makes Thursday one of the deadliest days for Ankara since launching its incursion into the Syrian territory on 20 January, AFP reported.
In response, Turkish warplanes attacked pro-Syrian government forces overnight, killing at least 17 people in a village in Afrin, the so-called British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Friday.
The dead included three members of the Syrian Kurdish YPG force, while the rest came from popular forces that support President Bashar al-Assad and entered Afrin last week to help repel the Turkish incursion, the Observatory added.
The Turkish military declined to comment on the report, but the Turkish state-run Anadolu news agency reported on Friday that Turkish attack helicopters had killed nine YPG fighters in the west of Afrin.
Another Turkish news agency, Dogan, reported that Turkish and allied forces had started an operation on Friday morning to take control of the town of Rajo in Afrin.
The Syrian government has already condemned the “brutal Turkish aggression” against Afrin, rejecting Ankara’s claim about having informed Damascus of the operation.
Damascus "strongly condemns the brutal Turkish aggression on Afrin, which is an inseparable part of Syrian territory," SANA cited a Syrian Foreign Ministry source as saying on January 20.
“Syria completely denies claims by the Turkish regime that it was informed of this military operation,” the source added.