Turkish airstrike kills SDF fighters in northeast Syria
A Turkish drone targeted a military post belonging to the Kurdish-led SDF between the villages of Al-Mukhallat and Al-Warah in the Raqqa governorate’s north, killing at least three members, local sources told The New Arab's Arabic-language site Al-Araby Al-Jadeed.
The post struck by Turkish forces was responsible for securing storages of heavy weapons used by the SDF, and was evacuated immediately after, according to the sources who wished to remain anonymous.
The raid comes after a period of relative calm in the area, as sources said Russia was trying to persuade the SDF to withdraw from the region and hand it over to the Syrian regime forces.
Regime-affiliated newspaper, Al-Watan, reported that a delegation from the SDF will visit Moscow this week to discuss a possible withdrawal, and seek guarantees that Turkey will halt its military operations against them.
The SDF is an alliance composed of Kurdish, Arab and other minority militias in the Syrian conflict. Backed by the US and in control of most of northeastern Syria, they have played a vital role in fighting the Islamic State group.
Ankara designates it - as well as other Kurdish armed groups – as terrorist organisations.
Turkey has been widely involved in the 10-year war and backs a number of rebel groups in the northwestern Idlib governorate. It also maintains a military presence in the region.