Update 20:30 Paris Time: Daesh retreats in Jarablus for Al-Bab more south because of orders of the commanders in Raqqa to “prevent the loss of more members”.
- According to the Daily Sabah (Turkish pro-AKP) elements of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) backed by Turkish air and ground support encircled the Daesh-held northern Syrian town of Jarablus as part of the joint Turkey-anti Daesh coalition operation dubbed Euphrates Shield on Wednesday, and took control of the town later in the day.
An opposition commander with the Failaq al Sham group, who requested anonymity, told reporters that most of the Daesh fighters in Jarablus had pulled out, some of them surrendering.
Another commander estimated up to 50 percent of the town was now under the control of the Turkish-backed opposition fighters.
“Daesh fighters have withdrawn from several villages on the outskirts of Jarablus and are heading south towards the city of al Bab,” the Failaq al Sham commander said.
As the Sultan stated, just before Turkey and coalition allies launch air strikes Wednesday morning against the Daesh (ISIS, ISIL) stronghold of Jarabulus on the Syrian side of the Syrian-Turkish border, “patience has run out” for Turkey. (According to Anadolu Agency, Turkish State News). The operation has the code name of ‘Euphrates Shield Operation‘.
— Conflict News (@Conflicts) 24 août 2016
Meanwhile, US Vice President Joe Biden visits Turkey Wednesday for a brief trip set to last several hours, in between a trip to Latvia and Sweden. United States will request from Turkey to put all its preasure on fighting ISIS (Daesh) a group that seemed not to worry as much Ankara as the Turkish air force concentrates its forces on bombing PKK and YPG positions. The latter airstrikes were considered especially unhelpful by Washington, since the YPG is a US ally against Daesh and the most effective in fighting them.
— Conflict News (@Conflicts) 24 août 2016
Turkish Armed Forces and air forces belonging to the U.S.-led international coalition launched an operation against Daesh in an effort to clear the Syrian city of Jarablus from the terror group, Turkish officials told Anadolu Agency. Daesh targets were "neutralized" as Turkish forces used intense artillery fire against the militants in Jarablus in a retaliatory strike, officials said. Daesh militants in Jarabulus had sent mortar shells on Turkish territory last week, prompting a strong Turkish response. AT 1:17 p.m. - Free Syrian Army fighters have captured Keklice village some three kilometers from the Turkish border and five kilometers west of Jarabulus city center. Sources reported that the fighters are preparing for an offensive moving towards the east to central Jarablus.
— Rudaw English (@RudawEnglish) 24 août 2016
— Velina Tchakarova (@vtchakarova) 24 août 2016
If Turkey fails to protect its Kurdish minority on its territory, and especially after ISIS Gaziantep’s attack that took place during a kurdish wedding that killed at least 54 people, there will be fear that Kurds in Turkey will undertake secession measures in order to protect themselves from the freaks.
With Manbij in the hands of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, Jarabulus is the last town affording a smuggling route for men and arms from Turkey into Syria’s al-Raqqa, the HQ of Daesh in the country.
There was a danger that if Turkey did not help Syrian Arab fundamentalists in the remnants of the Free Syrian Army take Jarabulus, it would also fall to the Syrian Democratic Forces over time.
If the YPG took Jarabulus, it would be in a position to close the gap between two Kurdish cantons in the north of Syria and create a united strip of Kurdish control along the Turkish border, which Syrian Kurds refer to as Rojava. Turkey is desperate to halt that attempt at Syrian Kurdish consolidation of territory. That’s why Turkey attacked Kurdish position into Syria after concentrating all its forces in ISIL for now. It seems that Syria has become the field for all battles!
Turkey on Tuesday, the 23rd of August, ordered residents to evacuate one of its border towns that lies opposite the Syrian town of Jarabulus controlled by Islamic State (IS) jihadists, television reported.
Police warned residents through loudspeakers to evacuate “for safety reasons” the town of Karkamis which was hit by a series of mortars fired from IS-held areas.
At 11 o’ clock today ,a Syrian activist group monitoring the civil war says Syrian rebels who were amassed at the Turkish border have crossed into Syria as part of a Turkey-backed operation to liberate Jarabulus.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the fighters were preceded by Turkish tanks and mine sweepers that crossed into Syria earlier on Wednesday as part of the operation to clear Jarablus from IS militants.
— Al Jazeera Türk (@AJTurk) 24 août 2016
According to Tribune.gr, at least 1,500 soldiers of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) are involved in the invasion. Also men of Faylaq Al-Sham are involved, a group associated with the Muslim Brotherhood, and also the Sultan Murad’s Turkmen Brigade.
At the same time, Turkey’s state-run news agency says that police teams have mounted simultaneous raids at multiple locations in Istanbul to detain several suspected members of the Islamic State group.
The Anadolu Agency reports the operations took place early on Wednesday in two Istanbul districts and were coordinated by a helicopter flying overhead.
The Turkish president says his country’s military operation in Syria aims to prevent threats from “terror” groups, including the Islamic State and the Syrian Kurdish militia (YPG) that is affiliated with Turkey’s outlawed Kurdish rebels.
— ANADOLU AGENCY (FR) (@aa_french) 24 août 2016