Turkey, Russia and Iran leaders to discuss Syria in Istanbul: Turkish source

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Turkey, Russia and Iran leaders to discuss Syria in Istanbul: Turkish source

Chief of General Staff Hulusi Akar inspected the ongoing Operation Olive Branch in northwestern Syria's Afrin region with fellow commanders-in-chief of armed forces from an airborne warning and control aircraft, the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) said Friday in a written statement. Ankara accuses the YPG of being terrorists linked to a Kurdish insurgency inside Turkey.

The Kurdish Democratic Federation of Northern Syria, which has administered the Afrin area since the start of the Syrian Civil War in 2012, and its People's Protection Forces (YPG) have accused Turkish forces of a variety of abuses, including killing civilians in air strikes.

The fighters belonged to the Syrian Kurdish armed group YPG and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) group, according to the army.

"This institution has nothing to do with Turkishness and nothing about them is worthy of the notion of Turkishness", Erdogan said in his Thursday remarks about the group.

Since defecting from the air force in 2012, Col. Raslan has fought against almost every side in the Syrian war.

Veale said they suspect the Syrian pro-government forces were trying to seize terrain from the US -backed forces liberated from IS militants previous year, including major oil fields in the area.

The leaders of Turkey, Russia and Iran agreed on Thursday to meet in Istanbul to discuss the conflict in Syria, a Turkish presidential source said.

The villages of Nesriyya, Dukkan, Iskan and Juqali Fawqani in the Jandaris region as well as the Orta Cakalli village in the town of Shaykh al-Hadid, western Afrin, were captured from the YPG, state-run Anadolu Agency reported.

Seven YPG fighter and two civilians were killed in the strikes, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a United Kingdom -based group that monitors the war in Syria.

The sources confirmed that Ankara hopes to keep its coordination with Iran, which signed with Russian Federation and Turkey a memorandum on setting up de-escalation zones in Syria, entered into force on May 6, 2017. She says the goal is to allow humanitarian aid and medical care to flow to more than 700 civilians in eastern Ghouta.

Terry Reintke MEP, Co-President of the LGBTI Intergroup at the European Parliament said "LGBTQ activists are increasingly silenced in Turkey, and this is worrying".

Describing Turkey as "the only North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally with an active insurgency inside its border with the PKK terrorist group", Mattis said the U.S.is working with Turkey on its legitimate security concerns not just with the PKK but also along the Syrian border, which has been turned into a battlefield by the Bashar al-Assad regime.

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