8 terrorists killed in Operation Olive Branch in Syria's Afrin, Turkish military says

Published 24.01.2018 00:00
Updated 24.01.2018 09:57
Turkish army tanks enter Afrin in Hassa, Hatay, Turkey, Monday, Jan. 22, 2018. (AP Photo)
Turkish army tanks enter Afrin in Hassa, Hatay, Turkey, Monday, Jan. 22, 2018. (AP Photo)

Eight terrorists were killed during the Operation Olive Branch in northwestern Syria's Afrin, the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) said Wednesday in a written statement.

The terrorists tried late Tuesday to infiltrate and attack Turkish military units stationed in the area, the statement said.

The TSK previously announced that at least 260 PKK/PYD/YPG and Daesh terrorists have been killed so far in the counter-terror operation, while three Turkish soldiers have been killed in clashes.

According to the Turkish General Staff, the operation aims to establish security and stability along Turkish borders and in the region, as well as to protect Syrian people from the oppression and cruelty of terrorists.

The operation is being carried out under the framework of Turkey's rights within international law, U.N. Security Council resolutions, its right to self-defense under the U.N. charter and respect for Syria's territorial integrity, it said.

The military also said "utmost importance" is being placed on not harming any civilians.

The operation in Afrin – bordering Turkey's Hatay and Kilis provinces – was widely expected in the wake of Turkey's Operation Euphrates Shield in northern Syria, which cleared Daesh terrorists from Turkey's border between Aug. 24, 2016, and March 2017.

Afrin has been a major hideout for the YPG/PKK since July 2012 when the Assad regime in Syria left the city to the terror group without putting up a fight.

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