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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Press TV

249 civilians killed in Turkish assaults against northern Syria: Observatory

Iran Press TV

Sun Jan 15, 2017 5:34PM

A so-called monitoring group says nearly 250 civilians have lost their lives and more than a thousand others sustained injuries ever since the Turkish military launched an operation in northern Syria against purported positions of Daesh Takfiri terrorists and Kurdish fighters.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported on Sunday that eight people, two children and a White Helmet rescue worker, were killed the previous day as Turkish forces bombed and shelled al-Bab town, located 30 kilometers south of the Turkish border, the nearby town of Bizeaa as well as surrounding areas, which are controlled by Daesh terrorists in Syria's northern province of Aleppo.

The Observatory noted that the latest deaths took to 249 the number of Syrian civilians killed in the wake of Turkey's Operation Euphrates Shield. There were 54 minors under the age of eighteen and 29 women among the fatalities.

The Britain-based monitoring group went on to say that more than 1,100 people were either injured or maimed between November 13 last year and January 15 this year as a result of Turkish artillery attacks and airstrikes against northern Syrian towns.

On August 24, 2016, the Turkish air force and special ground forces kicked off Operation Euphrates Shield inside Syria in a declared bid to support the Free Syrian Army militants and rid the border area of Daesh terrorists and fighters from the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) and Democratic Union Party (PYD).

The offensive was launched in coordination with the US-led military coalition, which has purportedly been fighting Daesh extremists since 2014.

The incursion was the first major Turkish military intervention in Syria, which drew strong condemnation from the Syrian government for violating the Arab country's sovereignty.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on November 29 that the Turkish army had marched into Syria to end the rule of President Bashar al-Assad, whom he accused of terrorism and causing the deaths of thousands.

The remarks caused consternation in the Kremlin, with Russian presidential spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, demanding Erdogan to clarify anti-Assad goals in Syria.

The Turkish leader backtracked on the comments two days later, asserting that the offensives there are aimed only at terrorists.

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