المرصد السوري لحقوق الانسان
The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights

Turkish forces work on going deep in Afrin city and their warplanes and artillery re-target the city amid increased fears for the lives of civilians

Afrin city continues to witness artillery and aerial bombardments in it and in other places in its countryside, where the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitored artillery and aerial bombardment by the Turkish forces and their drones and warplanes targeted several areas in the city and its outskirts, in conjunction with violent clashes continuous clashes between the Self-Defense Forces and YPG against the Turkish forces and the rebel and Islamic factions, in an attempt by the Turkish forces to go deep in the city and control it, amid constant fears for the lives of the remaining and for the lives of more than 200000 displaced people who live out in the open after their displacement from the city.

Where after the massacre that killed 8 people; it rose to 289 including 43 children and 28 citizens, the number of civilians of the al-Kurds, Arabs and Armenians, who were killed in the Turkish aerial, artillery and missile shelling, and in executions against several citizens in Afrin area since the 20th of January 2018, also the shelling injured hundreds of citizens with varying severity

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights received a video showing a fighter of the factions of “Olive Branch” Operation talking to an old woman –who stayed in her village- in which he made fun of her, and he ended his talk –talking to the woman- after promising to reach Iraq, saying: “you need a country.. you need to slayed from here”, also the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights received copies of audio recordings of commanders and members of the factions operating in the “Olive Branch” Forces; threatening to go to Manbij and the Syrian Jazeerah and reach al-Ya’rubiyah Crossing in the Syrian-Turkish-Iraqi border triangle when they are done with Afrin, while clashes are accompanied with renewed shelling which caused more human losses, also the SOHR obtained a copy of a video shot by a member of “Olive Branch” Operation Forces, in which he said that he is in Al-Shiekh Hadid town, which was confirmed by sourced to the Observatory. The fighter said in this video: “this is the fully liberated Sheikh Hadid free of separatist terrorist, and I urge the brothers and displaced people, who were displaced from Al-Raqqa, Al-Tabqa and other areas controlled by the separatist betrayals, to come and take a house with an olive land”. This video comes after other videos obtained by the SOHR which show fighters of Operation “Olive Branch” threatening the inhabitants of Afrin, directing their message through one of the fighters who said “to the Kurdish infidels, we inform you that if you turn to God in repentance, you have to know that you are our brothers, but if you do not, then we see your heads have been ripe and we have come to pick them up”, and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights mentioned that the video is likely to be filmed in the Sheikh Hadid area in the western countryside of Afrin, from one of the villages controlled by Turkish forces and the rebel and Islamic factions. Afrin area has witnessed similar calls from other to settle Syrian people displaced from other provinces inside these villages.

While clashes are accompanied with renewed shelling which caused more human losses, where it rose to 481 including 78 soldiers of the Turkish forces, the number of the members and fighters of the Turkish forces and the factions who were killed in the clashes against the Kurdish Units in Afrin area, while it rose to 469, the number of fighters of the YPG and the Self-Defense forces who were killed in the shelling and clashes in Afrin countryside, since the start of Operation “Olive Branch”, while 91 members at least of regime forces’ NDF were killed in the Turkish shelling since they started to enter on the 20th of February 2018.

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