Members of European Parliament condemn Turkish attack on Afrin


Turkey launched "Operation Olive Branch" against Kurdish forces in Afrin on Saturday evening.

Ankara has been infuriated by USA support for the YPG, one of several issues that have brought relations between the United States and its Muslim NATO ally close to breaking point. In statement released Sunday, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), denied it was to blame for the attack on Reyhanli.

France called for an emergency UN Security Council meeting to discuss the developments there and urged Turkish authorities "to act with restraint in a context where the humanitarian situation is deteriorating in several regions of Syria".

Turkish forces have intensified an offensive against Kurdish militia targets in northwestern Syria.

"Attempt to invade Afrin means an all-out attack and war against the Kurdish people".

Turkey views the Kurdish YPG, which is active in northern Syria, as an extension of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

Syria during the seven-year civil war after the August 2016-March 2017 Euphrates Shield campaign in an area to the east of Afrin against both the YPG and IS.

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Thirdly, the Turkish military mounted the seven-month-long Operation Euphrates Shield in northern Syria immediately after the attempted coup plot from August 2016 to March 2017 that brought the Turkish military and its Syrian militant proxies head-to-head with the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces and their U.S. bakers.

Turkish jets pummeled US-backed forces in Sryia's north - all while Turkey holds one of the US's most important bases and dozens of U.S. nukes. Turkey's latest offensive against the militia has tested the country's already strained relations with the US and complicated efforts to end Syria's seven-year civil war.

Turkey considers the YPG to be a terrorist group.

Erdogan has previously indicated that once control is imposed onto Afrin, Turkey wants to head west to defeat the YPG in the town of Manbij to the west.

The Afrin district houses an estimated 800,000 civilians, including displaced people from earlier years of the Syrian war.

Russian Federation pulled back troops that had been deployed near Afrin after it was briefed on the operation by Turkey.

Turkey has prepared around 10,000 Syrian fighters to storm Afrin, said Rami Abudrrahman of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group. Yet the declared USA anti-Iran approach will likely "kill off any hope" of such an outcome, says Barnes-Dacey.

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Mehmud says forces from the People's Protection Units, or YPG, have held the Turkish forces from making "any real progress" in Afrin.

The Syrian ceasefire guarantor nations, namely Russia, Iran and Turkey, have invited all major regional and worldwide players to take part in the Syrian National Dialogue Congress due to be held in Russia's Sochi, Sergey Lavrov added.

The SDF is now considering sending reinforcements to Afrin. The YPG said meanwhile that it had destroyed two Turkish tanks. Turkey has long accused the US of going back on a promise that the militants would withdraw from the town.

After the United States, Turkey has the second-largest standing army in North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

France on Sunday urged the Turkish authorities to "act with restraint" on the situation in Syria in a hard context "where the humanitarian situation is deteriorating in several regions of Syria", the French Foreign Ministry announced on Sunday in a statement.

Already scheduled to hear a report from United Nations aid chief Mark Lowcock on his recent visit to Syria, at France's request the Security Council also touched on the latest Turkish offensive as well as the Syrian campaign in Idlib and Eastern Ghouta.

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