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The New Arab

Several injured in missile attack on Turkish base in northwest Syria

Afrin has been under the control of Turkish-backed forces since 2018 [Getty]

Date of publication: 9 August, 2019

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Suspected Kurdish militants have attacked a Turkish military base in Afrin, leaving several injured, as Turkey prepares to establish a “security zone” in Kurdish-heldnortheastern Syria

A guided missile launched by unknown assailants struck a Turkish military base in the Afrin area in northwestern Syria on Friday.

A source from the Free Syrian Army told The New Arab that a missile hit the Turkish military base in Kimar, near the boundary between the Turkish-controlled Afrin area and territory held by the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) Bashar al-Assad's regime.

The attackers are believed to be from the YPG. Several people were injured in the attack and were flown to Turkey by helicopter, according to the Free Syrian Army source. Turkish forces also shelled areas where they believed the attackers were hiding.

On Thursday, three people were killed when a motorcycle-bomb exploded in Afrin.

Afrin is a Kurdish-majority area of Syria. It was held by the YPG until March 2018, when Turkey and Syrian rebel groups allied with it seized control of the area. Turkey says that the YPG are a “terrorist” offshoot of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which has been engaged in an armed insurgency against the Turkish state since 1984.

Kurdish militants have vowed to continue attacks against Turkish forces and Turkish-allied rebel groups in Afrin.

Turkey is currently planning to establish a “security zone” in Kurdish-held areas of northeastern Syria, following tough negotiations over the issue with the United States. Kurdish officials say they are still “evaluating” the Turkish-US plans. The Assad regime has rejected the idea.

On Thursday, Turkish and US forces carried out a joint patrol near the contested city of Manbij, which is controlled by the YPG and local Arab militias allied with it.

Last year the US and Turkey agreed that the YPG will leave the city and hand it over to civilian authorities but the agreement has not yet been implemented.

 

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