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POST TIME: 1 February, 2018 00:00 00 AM
Turkey ramps up Syria incursion despite criticism
AFP

Turkey ramps up Syria incursion despite criticism

AFRIN, Syria: Clashes raged between Turkish-backed forces and Kurdish militia in Syria’s Afrin region yesterday, as wounded civilians fled intense Turkish air strikes, reports AFP.

Turkey and allied Syrian rebels have pressed on with Operation Olive Branch in the Kurdish-controlled Afrin enclave despite mounting international concern and reports of rising civilian casualties. On Wednesday, French President Emmanuel Macron warned he would have a “real problem” with Turkey’s intervention if it turned into a full-blown “invasion.”

An AFP correspondent in Afrin heard warplanes flying overhead, and Kurdish officials said rocket fire on the town wounded 12 civilians.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said heavy bombardment and Turkish air strikes were accompanying ground fighting around Jandairis and Rajo, two areas to the west of Afrin near the Turkish border. The Britain-based war monitor reported that Turkish-backed forces had seized control of the border village of Shinkal to the northwest. “Turkish forces dispatched new military reinforcements overnight, including fighters and equipment, to Shinkal in an attempt to consolidate their control over several points and support attacking forces,” said Observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman.