The Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) continue countering Turkey’s attacks after the launch of the Olive Branch military operation on January 20 in Syrian Kurdish-populated Afrin.
The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) press center has reported of a downed Turkish UAV in the Bilbil area on Monday, adding that a female YPJ fighter was wounded during the clashes with the Turkish forces on the frontline.
The day before the SDF stated that clashes between Kurdish militia and the Turkish army, as well as pro-Turkish militants, continue in many parts of Afrin, especially on the Kastal Hill, which holds strategic importance.
In their summary message on January 27, the SDF reported they had downed a Turkish helicopter and two reconnaissance Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), bringing the total number of killed Turkish army men to 308.
According to the Syrian SANA news agency, since the launch of the Turkish “Olive Branch” military operation in northern Syria’s Afrin, about 86 civilians have been killed and 198 others wounded, while civilian infrastructure, residential buildings and archaeological site have been damaged.
The Turkish General Staff, in its turn, has reported on the results of the ongoing military offensive on Monday, saying that 25 military aircraft of the Turkish Air Force has destroyed hideouts, fire nests, and weapon depots of PYD, YPG, and Daesh, killing 40 terrorists, thus totaling the number of killed militants during the advance to 597.
Turkey has been conducting a military operation dubbed Olive Branch in Syrian Afrin since January 20. The decision to start an advance was taken soon after the US announced their decision to start training a border protection force comprising the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), affiliated with the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), which Turkey considers to be a terrorist group.
Ankara explains the offensive as a necessity to protect their borders from a “terrorist army,” stressing that it is not aimed against the Syrian government, calling the territorial integrity of Syria its mutual goal with Damascus.
Damascus, in their turn, has denounced the operation, calling it a violation of Syria’s sovereignty. Russia has called upon all parties involved to exercise restraint and respect Syria’s territorial integrity.