- Title: Syrian rebel says morale is high after capturing city from Kurdish control
- Date: 13th October 2019
- Summary: TEL ABYAD, SYRIA (OCTOBER 13, 2019) (REUTERS) FREE SYRIA ARMY FIGHTERS BY ROAD SIDE IN TEL ABYAD FIGHTERS GATHERED UNDER TREE FIGHTERS TEARING UP KURDISH YPG BANNER AND STEPPING ON IT TRACTOR VEHICLE DRIVING DOWN DIRT ROAD FIGHTER WATCHING AS TRACTOR DRIVES MACHINE-GUN MOUNTED VEHICLES DRIVING ALONG DIRT ROAD WITH REBELS REBELS DRIVING ALONG HIGHWAY REBELS PATROLLING ROADS UNIDENTIFIED REBEL FIGHTER SAYING IN ARABIC: ''I am from Tel Abyad. We were forced to leave five years ago because of Daesh and the PKK and the heroes of the Free Syria Army have liberated Tel Abyad and thank God, our morale is high.'' FIGHTERS NEAR ARMOURED PERSONNEL CARRIER FIGHTERS GETTING INSIDE APC FIGHTERS LOOKING OUT FROM INSIDE APC AS IT DRIVES OFF APC PATROLLING ROAD FIGHTERS WALKING IN THE TOWN AND SAYING: ''Allahu Akbar we liberated Tel Abyad.'' MORE OF MILITARY VEHICLES AND FIGHTERS FIGHTER WALKING PAST BORDER FENCE SHOWING TURKISH SIDE AND TURKISH FLAG
- Embargoed: 27th October 2019 18:07
- Keywords: Syria Turkey military operation Kurdish militia border town Tel Abyad Free Syria Army PKK
- Location: TEL ABYAD, SYRIA
- City: TEL ABYAD, SYRIA
- Country: Syria
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Military Conflicts
- Reuters ID: LVA001B0XKIMF
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Turkey-aligned Syrian rebels advanced inside the border town of Tel Abyad on Sunday (October 13) as part of a wider Turkish offensive to wrest control of the area from Kurdish militias it deems terrorist on its fifth day of fighting.
Addressing a news conference in Istanbul, President Tayyip Erdogan said the Turkish-led forces had also besieged Tel Abyad, and taken full control of the town of Ras al Ain, also a key border town, in its fight against the YPG Kurdish militia, which Ankara says is a terrorist organisation.
Video footage filmed on Sunday (October 13) in Tel Abyad showed Syrian forces taking over large parts of the town. One Syrian fighter said he was originally from Tel Abyad before he was forced to flee Islamic State advance some five years ago which Kurdish militias, with help from the U.S. had helped halt.
Erdogan said two Turkish soldiers and 16 Turkey-backed Syrian rebels had been killed in the operation.
He added that Turkish-led forces had killed 440 fighters from the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), in which the YPG comprises the main fighting element.
The Turkey-led forces have so far seized control of 109 square km (42 square miles), territory including 17 villages around Tel Abyad and four villages around Ras Al Ain, Erdogan said.
The Turkish assault has raised international alarm over large-scale displacements of civilians it has caused and, amidst the upheaval, a heightened risk of Islamic State militants escaping from prisons run by the Kurdish-led authorities.
(Production: Khalil Ashawi, Omer Berberoglu, Ayat Basma)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None