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Turkish air strikes target Kurdish militants in Syria and Iraq

A long-range grad rocket is launched by Turkish-backed Syrian fighters, reportedly targeting Kuweires military airfield and other points along the frontlines with areas held the Syrian Democratic Forces, in the district of al-Azraq in the rebel-held part in the north of Syria’s Aleppo province early August 20, 2022.— AFP 
  • Turkey blames Kurdish militants for blast on Istanbul’s Istiklal Avenue.
  • Strikes target bases of outlawed PKK and Syrian Kurdish YPG militia.
  • Turkey has conducted three incursions so far into northern Syria.

ISTANBUL: The Turkish defence ministry said early on Sunday it carried out air strikes on outlawed Kurdish militant bases in northern Syria and northern Iraq, which it said were used to carry out attacks on Turkey.

The strikes targeted bases of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia, which Turkey says is a wing of the PKK, the ministry added in a statement.

Turkey said on Tuesday it plans to pursue targets in northern Syria after it completes a cross-border operation against the PKK militants in Iraq, following a deadly bomb last weekend in Istanbul.

The government has blamed Kurdish militants for the blast on Istanbul’s Istiklal Avenue on November 13 that killed six people and injured more than 80. No group has claimed responsibility for the blast on the busy pedestrian avenue, and the PKK and SDF have denied involvement.

The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) said late Saturday that Turkish aircraft shelled two villages populated with internally displaced people in northern Syria.

“Turkish bombing of our safe areas threatens the whole region,” Mazloum Abdi, the chief commander of the US-allied SDF, tweeted.

Turkey has conducted three incursions so far into northern Syria against the YPG militia. President Tayyip Erdogan has previously said Turkey could conduct another operation against the YPG.

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