Turkey, Free Syrian Army make advances in Afrin

Marie Harrington
March 12, 2018

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan addressed the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party's sixth provincial congress in Turkey's Mersin on Saturday, Yeni Safak reports.

Managing alliances in Syria has always been a struggle for the United States, as underscored by how often two US-armed allies end up directly fighting one another.

North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members not only show no support towards Turkey's Operation Olive Branch and would even openly oppose Ankara's actions in Syria, but did not have the guts to do so, Erdogan claimed. North Atlantic Treaty Organisation is an Alliance that was founded by 11 European countries and the U.S.in 1949 which today consists of 29 independent member countries. The offensive against Kurdish militias in Syria's region of Afrin was launched late in January.

So far, 3,213 "terrorists" have been killed during the operation, carried out by Turkish troops and affiliated Free Syrian Army (FSA) militants, Erdogan stated.

However, it remains to be seen if the US allows Turkey to continue with its offensive or intervenes to protect the force that is vital to maintaining control of huge swathes of ungoverned Syria.

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Erdogan said that Turkey shares a 911-kilometer (566-mile) border with Syria, adding that it has been harassed by both terrorist groups and the Syrian regime. He added supporters in Turkey were also planning to come and act as human shields in an attempt to prevent an all-out attack on Afrin.

"We are advancing toward Afrin [city center]". The country considers the YPG a terror organization but its North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally, the United States, backs the fighters to combat Daesh group.

Over the last 48 hours, Afrin city has reportedly been targeted by Turkish air raids, water has been cut off, and the internet severed.

Turkey's president has criticized North Atlantic Treaty Organisation for not supporting the country's ongoing military operation against Syrian Kurdish fighters in Syria. The recent UNSC resolution, which urged a 30-days Syria-wide ceasefire, has been also used to call upon Erdogan to halt the invasion.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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