2 killed when Turkish helicopter crashes in Syria

Speaking in Istanbul, Erdogan said: "One of our helicopters was downed just recently".

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim announced the deaths in a televised address on Saturday.

Demirtas, who ran against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Turkey's first direct presidential election in 2014 and led HDP to parliament in two general elections in 2015, said he would step down as co-chair and not stand for re-election.

Murat Karayilan, a member of the PKK's Executive Council, told the pro-Kurdish Firat News Agency that Turkey was telling "lies" about the extent of the casualties it had suffered and number of YPG fighters killed.

In a statement, UN Secretary-General António Guterres called on the parties involved in the ongoing conflict to move toward a political solution, which he says is the "only way to end the violence and the awful suffering of the Syrian people". "Maybe one of our helicopters is gone, but they will pay for this not in kind, but so much more".

Turkey is targeting the Syrian Kurdish militia YPG in a weeks-long air and ground operation in Syria's Afrin region.

The UN official highlighted "reports of civilians including children being killed and injured as a result of airstrikes and ground-based strikes" by the Turkish army in the Syrian Kurdistan (Rojava) enclave of Afrin.

Turkey said it launched the operation to target "terrorist organizations", including YPG forces.

These Kurdish forces are now under attack from both Washington's North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally Turkey and by Syria's Russian-backed regime.

More than 1,200 people, including security force personnel and civilians, have lost their lives since the PKK - listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the USA, and European Union - resumed its decades-old armed campaign in July 2015.

The US, which has backed the Kurds in the ongoing battle against the Islamic State (IS) in Syria has called on Turkey to limit its military offensive in the Kurdish region.