3195 terrorists 'neutralized' in Turkey's Afrin op

3195 terrorists 'neutralized' in Turkey's Afrin op”

"Once we have purged the terrorists (from Afrin) we will then cleanse them from Manbij, Ayn al-Arab (Kobane), Tel-Abyad, Ras al-Ayn and Qamishli", he said in televised comments.

The advances of the Turkish troops and Turkish-backed forces on the ground was backed up by airstrikes from Turkish warplanes which targeted frontline areas as well as Afrin city itself.

However, a spokesperson for the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) troops, contradicted the claims.

The committee on FETO will discuss issues related to FETO and also focus on the subjects of Turkey's procurement of S-400 missile system from Russian Federation, migration and visa issues. "Closed doors can open, and guns and money can flow abundantly", he said.

The operation's media branch on Saturday said their new push had left Afrin's eastern side "exposed" to advancing fighters. "So hopefully, we can make some headway at that level today". We will be in Manbij tomorrow.

Erdogan reiterated Turkey's resolve to advance to Manbij - a region east of Afrin, where the US has a military presence - and other Syrian Kurdish held locations east of the Euphrates river, once the offensive on the enclave is completed.

Nauert added that, "This is an introductory meeting where we can start to hopefully work out some of these issues". Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Turkey would complete the Afrin offensive by May and carry out a joint operation with Iraq's central government against Kurdish militants in Iraq.

Tensions between the United States and Turkey has escalated as a result of the operation, with Ankara accusing Washington of leaving pockets of Daesh militants in Syria intact to justify continued cooperation with Kurdish forces in the country.

TRT World 's Defence Analyst Oubai Shahbandar explains what can be Turkey's next move in the region.

Reportedly, during the Operation Olive Branch, 730 square kilometers of the territory were cleared of terrorists.

Turkey launched operation "Olive Branch" on January 20 against the YPG, a powerful militia that controls the Afrin region in northwest Syria and which Ankara regards as a "terror group". So far the operation is believed to have taken control of captured 157 locations, including five town centres, 122 villages, 30 strategic areas, and one YPG base.

According to the Turkish General Staff, the operation aims to establish security and stability along Turkey's borders and the region as well as protect Syrians from the oppression and cruelty of terrorists.

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

It says more than 200 civilians have also been killed, but Turkey denies the reports and says it takes the "utmost care" to avoid civilian casualties.

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