Published by Ekurd Daily on 1/9/16
AFRIN, Syrian Kurdistan,— Turkish artillery began on Wednesday bombardments in Afrin, targeting Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units’ (YPG) bases in the city in Afrin Canton of Syrian Kurdistan (Rojava), one day after Ankara denied the existence of a truce in northern Syria.
There have been no reports of casualties in the areas so far, although damage has occurred, NRT reported.
A representative from the YPG to the global coalition against the Islamic State (IS) announced a temporary ceasefire with the Turkish military in northern Syria on Tuesday.
Turkey on Wednesday said it did “not accept” US claims that it had agreed a truce with Kurdish-led forces in northern Syria.
A spokesman for the U.S. Central Command, John Thomas, confirmed the news to AFP News Agency saying, “It’s a loose agreement for at least the next couple of days and we are hoping that will solidify.”
Several nations have shown concern and urged Turkey not to attack Kurdish forces battling IS militants in northern Syria. Russia, France, Germany and the U.S. have all called on Turkey not to target Kurds.
Last Sunday the Turkish warplanes and artillery units struck their bases in Afrin for the first time since Ankara sent tanks across the border.
Turkey launched an unprecedented cross-border offensive into Syria, dubbed “Euphrates Shield,” on August 24, saying it was aimed at ridding the frontier of both IS group jihadists and prevent US-backed Kurdish forces from extending areas under their control and connecting Kobani and Hassaka in the east with Afrin in the west.
Syrian rebels said on Saturday (August 27) that Turkey’s military targeted U.S.-backed Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) near the border town of Jarablus in air raids that Ankara said were against Kurdish forces.
Ankara fears the emergence of an autonomous Kurdish region in Syrian would bolster the separatist ambitions of Turkey’s own Kurds.
Syrian Kurds have established three autonomous zones, or Cantons of Jazeera, Kobani and Afrin and a Kurdish government across Syrian Kurdistan (northern Syria) in 2013. On March 17, 2016 Syria’s Kurds declared a federal region in Syrian Kurdistan.
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