Published: Wed, February 21, 2018
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

Turkey Warns Syrian Regime Forces Entering Afrin Face Grave Consequences

Turkey Warns Syrian Regime Forces Entering Afrin Face Grave Consequences

He also said that late on February 20 a convoy of around 50 vehicles made of pro-regime militias tried to enter the Afrin district in a bid to enter the city center but were forced back by Turkish army shelling.

But they quickly came under shelling by Turkish forces, who said they had fired "warning shots" at the "pro-regime terrorist groups".

Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin told reporters Wednesday that the convoy of up to 50 vehicles had retreated east of Aleppo, adding: "It appears that their aim was a little bit of a show and a little bit of propaganda".

Their arrival opens the door to wider escalation on Syria's messy northern battlefront, where Turkish troops, Syrian rebels, the Syrian army, Iran-linked militias backing Damascus, Kurdish fighters and Russian and American forces are all contending.

Turkish military continues to clear northwestern Syria's Afrin of PYD/PKK, Daesh terrorists during anti-terror operation.

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A teacher in the school that was attacked, who confirmed the attack, said the insurgents came into the school environment through the eastern part of the town at about 7pm on Monday.

Turkey has called for Syrian President Bashar Assad's ouster and supported opposition fighters throughout the seven-year conflict.

"But then they were forced to go back after artillery shooting, this file is closed for now", he said.

Erdogan described the pro-government fighters coming to the YPG's aid as Shi'ite militias and warned they would pay a heavy price.

He also said Turkey was not in direct talks with the Syrian government, but its messages were being conveyed indirectly. The Turkish forces are involved in anti-PKK raids across the country.

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