Syria Task Force to provide security in Afrin

DAILY SABAH WITH AA
ANKARA
Published 15.11.2018 21:53
Updated 16.11.2018 00:10

Ankara has not slacked off from ensuring security in Manbij after it spearheaded efforts to clear Afrin of the People's Protection Units (YPG) - the PKK terrorist group's Syrian offshoot.

After backing opposition forces to clear the northern Syrian region with Operation Olive Branch, Turkey is making sure the peace is not compromised. As such, security is being provided by a "Syria Task Force" affiliated with the Turkish Police Special Operations Department.

The Syria Task Force is comprised of 12 different teams from the Special Operations Departments from Ankara, Hatay and Gaziantep provinces. The Syria Task Force is also participating in high-risk operations. The Syrian local police forces, which have been trained by Turkish special units, will function under seven main departments after being established, including anti-terrorism, intelligence, traffic, crime scene investigation, bomb disposal and commando.

Moreover, the Syria Task Force will carry out joint operations with the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) and the Turkish intelligence apparatus when necessary.

Troops from the Turkish Special Forces Command have already prevented two attempted suicide attacks with bomb-laden vehicles in the last three months and also disposed of more than 100 improvised explosive devices.

In the face of growing security threats posed near its borders, Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch on Jan. 20 to eliminate the YPG, which took advantage of the security vacuum and gained control of vast swathes of Afrin. This operation successfully paved the way for the return of Syrian refugees.

Since the end of Operation Olive Branch in April, Turkey has made efforts to rebuild the towns' infrastructure, as well as health and education institutions.

Meanwhile, Hürriyet newspaper reported that the population of Afrin city center has reached 200,000 from 50,000 as an average of 1,000 people have been returning every day following efforts to return life to normal.

Education, health and judicial systems have been renovated and employment, reconstruction and trade has also been rejuvenated with new initiations led by Ankara.

Furthermore, the YPG's prisons and tunnels are continuously being uncovered in ongoing investigations by joint forces.

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