Turkish army strikes YPG posts in Syria's Tal Rifat

AZAZ, Syria
Published 13.02.2019 00:29

The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) struck Thursday the PKK's Syrian affiliate, the People's Protection Units (YPG), occupying villages near northern Syria's Tal Rifat.

Howitzers deployed in the area of operations of Turkey's Operation Euphrates Shield fired 12 rounds against YPG posts in the Tal Rifat, Shayk Issa and Harbil villages of the Mare district.

On Wednesday, the Turkish army struck YPG positions in Tal Rifat as well.

For the last three years, Tal Rifat has been occupied by the YPG, which has dubbed the territory between Tal Rifat and Manbij as the "Shahba Canton."

The YPG occupied Tal Rifat in 2016 in hopes of linking Afrin to areas under its control east of the Euphrates River, thus establishing a zone of influence along Syria's border with Turkey.

Syria's al-Bab district, however, which is located between Tal Rifat and Manbij, falls within Operation Euphrates Shield's area of operations, thus disrupting the YPG/PKK's sought-after territorial link.

Some 250,000 refugees from Tal Rifat and its outskirts have taken up temporary residence in the opposition-held city of Azaz, located adjacent to the Euphrates Shield zone.

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