Mar 08 2018

Turkey says 3,000 terrorists “neutralised” in Syria

Turkey’s military said it had “neutralised” an additional 115 terrorists in Syria’s Afrin region over the past 24 hours.

The figure brings the total count to 3,055, the military said in a daily update on its web site on Thursday. That’s a reported increase of almost 1,000 in the past week. Turkey uses the term “neutralised” to mean enemy combatants killed or captured.

346 Kurdish fighters have died in the conflict, wihich began on Jan. 20, according to the U.K.-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a non-government group that collates information about the Syrian civil war using local statistics and eye witness reports.

Turkey started its military incursion, together with militants of the Free Syrian Army (FSA), to battle fighters of the People’s Protection Units (YPG), the armed wing of a Kurdish group that’s established an enclave in the region with autonomy from the government in Damascus.

The YPG is allied with the United States in its fight against Islamic State (ISIS), but Turkey says the organisation is indistinguishable from the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), an autonomy-seeking group in Turkey designated as terrorist by Washington and the European Union.