Turkey says “neutralizes” 13 Kurdish militants in northern Syria

ANKARA, April 25– Turkey “neutralized” 13 members of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units in northern Syria, the Turkish defense ministry said Monday, as the tension between the Turkish military and the YPG escalates after the killing of a Turkish police officer. The YPG members were in preparation to “attack” in Turkey- controlled areas in northern Syria, the…

ANKARA, April 25 (Xinhua) — Turkey “neutralized” 13 members of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) in northern Syria, the Turkish defense ministry said Monday, as the tension between the Turkish military and the YPG escalates after the killing of a Turkish police officer.

The YPG members were in preparation to “attack” in Turkey-controlled areas in northern Syria, the ministry tweeted.

Turkish authorities often use the term “neutralize” to imply “terrorists” were killed, wounded, or captured in security operations.

Turkey earlier said it “neutralized” 50 YPG members on Saturday and seven others on Sunday.

On Friday, the YPG attacked with anti-tank weapons a police checkpoint in the Mare settlement in the Operation Euphrates Shield area, killing police officer Aytac Altinors, according to the ministry.

Turkey’s forces and the YPG fighters often exchange fire on the Syrian border.

The Turkish army launched Operation Euphrates Shield in 2016, Operation Olive Branch in 2018, Operation Peace Spring in 2019, and Operation Spring Shield in 2020 in northern Syria.

Turkey says the operations aim to eliminate terror threats against the country and provide a safe zone that will facilitate the return of Syrian refugees to their homes.

Ankara sees the YPG as the Syrian branch of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).

The PKK, listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, has been rebelling against the Turkish government for more than three decades. Enditem

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