Fri, 27 May 2022

ANKARA, May 11 (Xinhua) -- Turkey on Wednesday "neutralized" 10 members of Syria's Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) in northern Syria, the country's Defense Ministry said.

The YPG members were killed as they were preparing to attack Turkey's Operation Euphrates Shield and Operation Olive Branch military zones, the ministry tweeted.

Turkish authorities often use the term "neutralized" to imply "terrorists" killed, wounded, or captured in security operations.

The tension between YPG and the Turkish military accelerated after the YPG attacked a police checkpoint in Mare settlement in the Operation Euphrates Shield zone with anti-tank weapons on April 22, killing one Turkish police officer.

Turkey said on Tuesday its forces has killed six YPG members in northern Syria, a day after it said 12 others have been killed.

Turkish forces and the YPG members often exchange fire on the Syrian border.

The Turkish army launched Operation Euphrates Shield in 2016, Operation Olive Branch in 2018, Operation Peace Spring in 2019, and Operation Spring Shield in 2020 in northern Syria.

Turkish authorities say the operations aim to eliminate terror threats against Turkey and provide a safe zone that will facilitate the return of Syrian refugees to their homes.

Ankara sees the YPG as the Syrian branch of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

The PKK, listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, has been rebelling against the Turkish government for more than three decades.

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