By Euronews with Reuters• last updated: 10/10/2019 – 14:42
Turkey has launched a military operation into northeastern Syria, in what it says is an offensive aimed at eliminating a “terror corridor” along the southern Turkish border.
After Turkish warplanes and artillery pounded Kurdish YPG targets with air strikes and artillery barrages on Wednesday afternoon, Turkish troops and their Syrian rebel allies entered northeast Syria on Wednesday night, the defence ministry said, starting a land offensive against Kurdish militia fighters.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan defended Turkey’s actions following worldwide condemnation of the offensive. Claiming his critics “are not honest”, he told a meeting of his AK Party he would open the door to Europe for 3.6 million Syrian refugees, currently in Turkey, if European countries label Turkey’s military incursion in Syria as an occupation.
The Turkish army has hit a total of 181 militant targets with air strikes and howitzers since the start of operation, the Turkish defence ministry said late on Wednesday night.
The Kurdish-led force in northeast Syria confronted and “repelled ” the Turkish ground attack, Mustafa Bali, spokesman for the Syrian Democratic Forces, said on Twitter.
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