Key highway reached in Syria offensive, Turkish media reports

Key highway reached in Syria offensive, Turkish media reports

Key highway reached in Syria offensive, Turkish media reports

No one can deny that the space for the Turkish military operation was made after US President Donald Trump gave the order to withdraw troops from Kurdish controlled Syria after a phone call with the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Trump has also had rare criticism from senior figures in his own Republican Party who accuse him of deserting loyal U.S. allies in the Kurds.

Turkish forces are targeting the Syrian border town of Ras al-Ayn from three directions, according to the Observatory.

Turkey's defense ministry says the country's forces have captured a Syrian border city after clashes with Kurdish-led militias.

The foreign ministry said that by accusing Turkey, rather than a "terrorist organisation that threatens the territorial integrity of Syria", the League was betraying the Arab world.

The Arab League will contact the United Nations secretary general to transmit the content of the statement to all member states in the form of an official document.

Around 20,000 Kurds took part in protests across Germany against the Turkish military operation against Kurdish units in Syria, German media reported. The Arab foreign ministers also agreed to consider severing diplomatic and economic ties with Turkey, including tourism and cultural activities, and halting military cooperation with it.

Saturday's meetings in Egypt's capital came as the Turkish offensive against Syrian Kurdish fighters enters its fourth day.

Members of The American Rojava Center for Democracy, an organization that advocates for freedom, democracy, and peace in Syria, take part with other activists in a rally to protest Turkey's incursion into Kurdish-controlled northeast Syria and urge US action against Turkey, outside the White House in Washington, U.S, October 12, 2019. Syrian Kurdish forces appeared to be holding out in some areas of the town.

"We are now fighting on two fronts: one front against the Turkish invasion and a front against Daesh", he said.

Turkish troops also cut the route linking the northeastern city of Hassakeh with Aleppo, Syria's largest city and once commercial center, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an opposition war monitor.

Public and private hospitals in Ras al Ain and Tel Abyad, the two main targets of the Turkish-led offensive, have been closed since Friday. The ethnically and religiously mixed town with a population of Arabs, Kurds, Armenians and Syriac Christians had been under the control of Kurdish fighters since 2013.

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The senior Turkish official mentioned "nearly all" YPG forces had fled south from Ras al Ain.

Most of the town's residents have fled in recent days for fear of the invasion.

"U.S. troops in the vicinity of Kobani came under artillery fire from Turkish positions at approximately 9 p.m. local October 11", Navy Capt. Brook DeWalt, a Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement late Friday. Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency said that Turkey-backed Syrian opposition forces had taken control of the M-4 highway that connects the towns of Manbij and Qamishli.

Turkey forces are even attacking children in North-East Syria.

Later on Saturday the Syrian National Army, the banner under which the Ankara-allied former rebels fight, said it had ordered commanders to "continuously supervise combatants on the frontlines to prevent any abuse".

Aid groups have warned of a looming humanitarian crisis, with civilians struggling to find shelter, food and water. That's in addition to 38 civilians on the Syrian side.

"Despite increasing worldwide condemnation, there is no sign whatsoever of the Turkish military pulling back", he added.

Turkey on Saturday said 459 YPG fighters had been "neutralised" since the operation began, a term that commonly means killed. The number couldn't be independently verified.

Turkey forces even killed a woman politician from Syria who was trying to spread peace in the Syria by doing her work.

Mr Macron's office said in a statement on Saturday that in the call, the French leader "reiterated the need to make the Turkish offensive stop immediately".

Jafar Said, a doctor who is among those seeking safety in Iraq, said his home town in northeastern Syria is mostly governed by Kurdish authorities.

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