المرصد السوري لحقوق الانسان
The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights

Hundreds of the factions’ fighters head to the borders of Turkey and Iskenderun with Afrin in a preparation for the attack which will be carried out through 10 fronts at least

The Russian forces are still presented in Afrin area and they have not withdrawn from it until now

The military preparations are still continuing to start Afrin Operation which will be carried out by the Turkish forces in Afrin area controlled by the Syria Democratic Forces, and intersected sources confirmed to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights that hundreds of fighters of the factions operating within “The Euphrates Shield” Operation, as well as the Turkish-backed rebel and Islamic factions operating in Aleppo, headed from the northern countryside of Aleppo through the Turkish side, to the fronts adjacent the northern border of Afrin area with Turkey and its western border with Afrin area.

Reliable sources confirmed to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights that the Russian forces have not withdrawn yet from Afrin area where points of the Russian forces are located, while the factions’ fighters headed to the border of Afrin with Turkey and Iskenderun, which comes in the frame of the Turkish operation which expected to be carried out at any moment, which will be spearheaded by the rebel and the Islamic factions and the factions of “The Euphrates Shield” Operation, and the sources also asserted to the SOHR that the operation will be carried out through 10 fronts at least, after the massive Turkish concentration of vehicles, equipment, soldiers, armored vehicles and tanks in order to be used in the operation in Afrin area in the north-western sector of Aleppo.

And the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights published this morning that the escalation of the artillery and rocket shelling by the Turkish forces on Afrin area, has been completed its first week, since it started on the 13th of January 2018, and this week witnessed daily shelling on the controlled areas of the Syria Democratic Forces in Afrin an the north-western countryside of Aleppo, which resulted in the fall of casualties, and caused material damage to the property of the citizens, and this shelling coincided with military movement in the Turkish side of the border with Afrin, in the frame of the accelerated preparations carried out by the Turkish forces to carry out a military operation against the SDF in Afrin area, and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also monitored that the Turkish forces carried out shelling which sometimes coincided with shelling by the rebel and Islamic factions operating with them within “The Euphrates Shield” Operation, and this shelling targeted the areas of Basoufan and Dakmidash and the hills of Bedir Khan, Hawazan, Bashur Bakhtiar and Baniin Shirawa area as well as other places in Jendires area and Raju Township, in conjunction with shelling targeted the areas of Kafr Janna, Sheikh Khurzah, Jisr Hashraka and Qastal Jendo, which are all located in Afrin area, as well as the SDF-held areas in the northern countryside of Aleppo, which contains Bailuniyyah, Ein Daqneh, Al-Malikiyah, Shawarjah, Basoufan, Hasya, Kafr Nasih, Tel Jijan, Shaykh Issa, and other areas in this countryside, and this shelling during the past days, resulted in the injury of 3 children including 2 children, while a fighter of the SDF was killed in this shelling, and this shelling was met in some areas by a response by the SDF which targeted positions of the Turkish forces on the border line, while the Turkish forces expanded their scope of shelling through targeting the western countryside of the city of Ayn Al-Arab (Kobani) and targeting Al-Malikiyah area “Dayrik” in the border triangle of Syria, Iraq and Turkey.

It is noteworthy that Afrin area witnessed repeated shelling in the past few months by the Turkish forces which turned during the past two months hold their control over points where they can be presented in the vicinity of Afrin area, and in the outskirts of the YPG-held areas, after they entered the area and carried out reconnaissance operations in Idlib and Aleppo countryside, in order to determine the most suitable place, and these rounds took place with the accompanying and the protection of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham which secured the entry of the Turkish forces and their reconnaissance to the area, until they hold their points.

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