BEIRUT: Turkish airstrikes on a regime-controlled border station in Syria claimed 11 lives on Tuesday after fighting broke out among the Ankara’s forces and the local Kurdish militants overnight, according to a war monitor.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that “eleven fighters were killed in a Turkish air attack that targeted a Syrian regime outpost near the Turkish border,” without identifying the deceased as belonging to the Damascus government or Kurdish forces.
Turkish military planes, according to the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, “had launched 12 airstrikes against positions of a Syrian army located on the border strip west of Kobane.”Farhad Shami, a spokesman for the SDF, stated that the operations resulted in “casualties,” although he did not say how many.
As part of agreements to halt cross-border offensives by Ankara against Kurdish troops it considers as terrorists, Syrian government soldiers have deployed in regions held by Kurdish fighters close to the Turkish border.
The Observatory, a British-based monitoring organisation that depends on a network of informants inside Syria, reported that Tuesday’s attacks came after nighttime battles among Ankara’s forces and the SDF, which is commanded by Kurds, west of Kobane.
According to the Turkish defence ministry, as part of the escalation, Kurdish troops launched an attack within Turkish territory, killing one soldier.In retaliatory assaults inside Syria, Ankara “neutralised thirteen terrorists,” the ministry said, adding that activities were still taking place in the area.
Since 2016, Turkey has undertaken a number of cross-border offensives against Daesh and Kurdish forces, although few of these operations have killed combatants for the Syrian regime.