Turkey continues offensive against "terrorists" and Kurds
At least 25 people killed yesterday. According to Turkey, they were all "Kurdish militants" and "terrorists." Ankara and Washington increasingly distant.
Damascus (AsiaNews / Agencies) - At least 25 people were killed in Turkish air raids yesterday in the area controlled by the Syrian Kurds, near the town of Jarabulus. According to Turkish military sources the slain are all Kurdish militants.
Other sources speak of at least 35 civilians and four militants killed by the raid of the Turkish forces in the same area.
The attacks come on the fifth day of Ankara's military operation called "Euphrates Shield", to fight the militants of the Islamic State (IS) and the militias of the Kurdish Syrian Democratic Union Party (PYD), which President Recep Tayyep Erdogan likens to "terrorists."
Speaking yesterday in Gaziantep - where last week the IS killed 54 people during a wedding - the Turkish president said that "operations against terrorist organizations will continue until the end".
The Turkish operation, which has hitherto led to the occupation of at least nine villages, wrested from the IS and the Kurds, is aimed more at preventing the territory along the border with Turkey being occupied by Syrian Kurds.
In this way, Turkey is increasingly distiniancing itself from its alliance with the United States, which support the Kurdish populations in Syria and has been battling IS with them.
Ankara fears that a strong presence of Kurds in the territory on the border could increase the power of the PKK, the Kurdish Workers Party, accused of terrorist operations, and augment the desire of the Kurdish people living in Turkey for autonomy.