Published On: Thu, Oct 10th, 2019

Turkey attacks Syria map: Where is Turkey attacking the Kurds in Syria? | World | News

Days after US troops were withdrawn from the Turkey – Syrian border, Turkey have launched a military operation named “Operation Peace Spring” and began ground and air assaults in north-eastern Syria. The operation according to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is to “prevent the creation of a terror corridor across our southern border.

“[We] will neutralise terror threats against Turkey and lead to the establishment of a safe zone, facilitating the return of Syrian refugees to their homes.

“We will preserve Syria’s territorial integrity and liberate local communities from terrorists.”

The so-called safe zone’s target area is a 20-mile deep area running 300 miles along the Syrian side of the border.

The aim now for Turkey is to push back members of the biggest Kurdish militia, the People’s Protection Units (YPG).

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However, this month Mr Erdogan told US President Donald Trump that a cross-border operation would “soon be moving forward”.

Mr Trump did not support this and withdrew US troops from the area.

On Wednesday the US President insisted “in no way have we abandoned the Kurds,” and said he firmly opposed the operation.

He said in a statement: “The United States does not endorse this attack and has made it clear to Turkey that this operation is a bad idea.

“Turkey has committed to protecting civilians, protecting religious minorities, including Christians, and ensuring no humanitarian crisis takes place — and we will hold them to this commitment.”

The initial Turkish operation is thought to initially focus on an area 100km wide encompassing the border between the towns of Tal Abyad and Ras al-Ain, which is a sparsely populated, mostly Arab area.

There are also camps of displaced people and suspected IS family members across northern Syria.

The families of those suspected of being IS members are being held at three of these camps – Roj, Ain Issa, and Al-Hol.

Roj is home to 1,700 people, and Ain Issa 12,900 as of May 2019 and would be located inside the projected “safe zone”.

The largest camp – Al-Hol – is 60km away from Turkey and would not be inside the zone.

Al-Hol is home to 68,000 residents, more than 94 percent of which are women and children and 11,000 are foreign nationals.

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