Three more Turkish soldiers killed in Syria offensive: army

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Since the beginning of Operation Olive Branch on January 20 to clear PKK/PYD/KCK/YPG and Daesh terrorists from Afrin region, eight Turkish soldiers were killed, in addition to approximately 20 losses of Free Syrian Army (FSA) fighters.

The Turkish operation aims to clear Afrin of the USA -backed Syrian Kurdish militia, known as the People's Protection Units or YPG, which Turkey considers to be a terrorist group and an extension of the Kurdish insurgency within its borders.

Turkey said the operation, with the help of the Free Syrian Army, aims to clear Syrian territories of all terrorist groups and create a safe environment to facilitate the permanent return of Syrian refugees to their country.

The Turkish military said two of its soldiers were killed in Syria and a third was killed on the Turkish side of the border in an attack by Syrian Kurdish militiamen.

Earlier on Saturday, the Turkish General Staff said in a statement that the Turkish Armed Forces had destroyed 15 terrorist targets and neutralized 74 terrorists in overnight airstrikes.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday the Turkish army and Ankara-backed rebels had suffered 25 fatalities between them in the operation so far.

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Since the start of the operation, PYD/PKK cross-border attacks on civilians have killed at least seven people and injured over 100.

Rudaw said they could not independently verify the video.

The Turkish forces also gained control of Mount Barsia. "There is not much to go", he said.

Kalin called on the United States to "disengage" from the YPG and said Turkey will continue communications with "our American allies to avoid any confrontation".

"As fighting in Idlib and Afrin displaces thousands more", Fakih said, "the number of Syrians trapped along the border willing to risk their lives to reach Turkey is only likely to increase".

Turkey says the YPG is an offshoot of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) which has waged a three-decade insurgency against the Turkish state.

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