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100 Civilians Lost Lives in Turkey’s Syria Offensive: Report

At least 100 civilians were killed in a two-month military operation by Ankara and Turkish-backed forces in Northern Syria, a report said, as pressures grow on Ankara to stop the drive which many suspect is really meant to battle militants.

The so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said in a report that Turkish airstrikes and shelling as part of the assault have killed 96 civilians, including 22 children, since it was launched on August 24.

The Britain-based group said the operation, dubbed the "Euphrates Shield", has mostly affected Kurdish people in areas under the control of ISIS terrorist group in Northern Syria. It added that the attacks are carried out by Turkish-backed militants while Turkey's military lends them heavy firepower, mostly airstrikes and artillery fired from Turkish soil.

Turkey began the military push despite opposition by the Syrian government and even a Western coalition claiming to fight ISIS in Syria.

Ankara has defended the offensive as a countermeasure against attacks by militants on its soil. Turkish officials have not denied that the military and allied militants also target Kurdish fighters, but they insist that the main objective behind the offensive is to attack ISIS positions.

Ankara has yet to comment on the report by the monitoring group but Turkish officials have in the past rejected accusations of civilian deaths in the campaign, FNA reported.

Source: Al Alam


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