Tuesday, 20 August 2019 05:30 GMT
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Five Turkish soldiers dead in Afrin




(MENAFN) Five Turkish soldiers have been killed by Kurdish forces from the People's Protection Units (YPG) in Afrin region in northwest Syria, according to Turkey's military.

The military said on Saturday that the Turkish forces were killed in a YPG attack on a tank.

Turkey has been waging "Operation Olive Branch" against Syria's Afrin enclave since January 20 in a bid to destroy the US-backed YPG, which Ankara views as a terror organization and the Syrian branch of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). The latter has been fighting for an autonomous region inside Turkey since 1984.

The Syrian government has condemned the "brutal Turkish aggression" against Afrin, rejecting Ankara's claim about having informed Damascus of the operation.

In recent days, Turkey has arrested more than 300 people, including politicians, journalists and activists, for social media posts criticizing its military offensive in Afrin.

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Five Turkish soldiers dead in Afrin

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