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Presidential aide: Turkey owes no explanation for Afrin

Presidential aide: Turkey owes no explanation for Afrin”

Turkey warned on Wednesday that pro-Syrian regime forces entering the Afrin region become targets of the Turkish forces in the area, according to a Reuters report.

Images were aired of "popular forces" loyal to President Bashar Assad moving toward Afrin city in pick-up trucks equipped with anti-aircraft guns and armoured personals carriers (APCs), Efe reported.

Turkey and their allied Syrian rebel groups have been conducting a military offensive in the Kurdish-held enclave to gain control of the border area and drive out fighters of the US-backed Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG).

Turkey will not stop the Operation Olive Branch even if the so-called Syrian government forces enter Afrin, Ibrahim Kalin, spokesman for the Turkish president, said February 21.

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"A dozen or so pick-up trucks had come to advance toward Afrin".

The YPG militia is regarded by Ankara as the Syrian affiliate of the banned Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey.

On Jan. 20, Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch to clear PKK/KCK/PYD-YPG and Daesh terrorists from Afrin in northwestern Syria.

At least 26 Turkish servicemen were killed and over 70 were injured during the Olive Branch operation.

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"Speaking on Turkey's aggression in Afrin, this is the blatant violation of Syria's sovereignty", the ambassador said.

Syrian television had earlier shown the group of fighters passing through a checkpoint that bore the insignia of the Kurdish security force, some chanting "one Syria, one Syria", and driving further into Afrin.

Kalin said that presently there are no direct diplomatic contacts between Ankara and Damascus.

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