© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A view exhibits the aftermath after Turkish warplanes carried out air strikes, in Derik countryside, Syria November 21, 2022. REUTERS/Orhan Qereman
By Suleiman Al-Khalidi
AMMAN (Reuters) – Turkish drones are focusing on key oil installations run by the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in northeast Syria, three native sources stated, in air strikes which drew robust condemnation from the US in a single day.
The SDF stated dozens of individuals together with 11 of its fighters had been killed within the strikes, which mark the primary time Turkey has systematically focused oil fields within the SDF-controlled area.
Turkey’s warplanes started conducting air strikes on Syrian Kurdish YPG militia bases in northern Syria on the weekend, prompting retaliatory strikes alongside the Syrian border.
The SDF, a U.S. accomplice within the struggle towards Islamic State, stated Turkey had struck deeper into Syrian territory than in its earlier operations. It stated in a press release the strikes had killed 15 civilians and 25 Syrian authorities troopers.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has promised to increase the operation and stated Ankara would launch a land incursion at a time it judges handy.
“The enemy goals to inflict large blows on our defence forces, particularly our commanders and command centres … On this means it prepares the bottom for a floor offensive,” stated the SDF assertion.
Ankara has already carried out three land incursions into Syria focusing on Kurdish militias since 2016.
Turkey launched the air operations in retaliation for a lethal Nov. 13 Istanbul bomb assault that it blamed on the YPG militia, which spearheads the SDF. Ankara views the YPG as an extension of the outlawed Kurdistan Employees Occasion (PKK).
No one has claimed accountability and the PKK and YPG have denied involvement.
The Turkish drones hit oil installations late on Wednesday close to the Syrian city of Qamishli, in addition to the oil-rich space Rumeilan, close to which U.S. troops are situated, in line with three sources within the Syrian cities of Qamishli and Hasaka.
Turkey has additionally escalated drone strikes within the coronary heart of city areas, focusing on senior YPG navy officers, stated the sources, who’re in contact with SDF figures.
The Pentagon stated the Turkish air strikes threatened the protection of U.S. navy personnel and that the escalating scenario jeopardized years of progress towards Islamic State militants within the space.
The USA has roughly 900 troopers in Syria, primarily working with the SDF within the northeast.
Requested concerning the Pentagon remark, a Turkish defence ministry supply stated Ankara “selects targets sensitively” and was in shut contact with U.S. counterparts. The supply stated oil fields weren’t amongst Ankara’s targets.
The PKK is taken into account a terrorist organisation by Turkey, the US and the European Union. U.S. help for the SDF has for years been a significant supply of pressure in ties with its NATO ally Turkey.