The demonstration is reportedly organized by the ruling Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Rojava or northern Syria. Photos by ANF
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – In protest against recent artillery shells by Turkey and its allied Free Syrian Army (FSA) which resulted in casualties among civilians on the city of Afrin in Rojava or northwestern Syria, thousands of people marched into the streets, condemning Turkish troops’ deployment and shelling in the region.
The widespread demonstration is reportedly organized by the ruling Democratic Union Party (PYD) with people from other cities including Kobane taking part in it.
Kurdish groups reported on Tuesday several civilian causalities in Afrin and its outskirts following overnight shelling by the Turkish military and its FSA proxies.
A large scale Turkish-FSA operation in the works was reported yesterday, and Turkey deployed further troops to its nearby border last week.
The Kurdish Peoples’ Protection Units in Syria (YPG) reported yesterday artillery attacks “by Turkish troops and gangs under their command targeted Mirenar, Fîlat, Qetma, Qestelcindo villages in Shera and Cilber and Îska villages in Sherawa region of Efrin.”
The YPG announced a 40-year-old woman had been killed, along with two 13 year olds.
Additionally four people were said to be hospitalized. Monday, People's Protection Units (YPG) announced the deaths of three people and seven others injured in the Shehba region on the outskirts of Afrin.
If Turkey attacks Afrin, “Turkey will be plunged into a swamp, politically and militarily – there will be an historical resistance against Turkish occupation in Afrin and Shahba regions,” Mehmud Berxwedan, commander of Kurdish YPG forces in Afrin, told Voice of America’s Kurdish radio service last week.
But an FSA leader claimed that their operations in the region were not aimed at taking control of Afrin, but rather to clean the Turkish border of YPG.
"At the first stage, we plan to take control the city of Tall Rifaat, as well as the local airbase, and then we plan to begin with the siege of Afrin, which is under the control of Kurdish YPG forces. Our goal is not to enter the territory of Afrin, but rather to clear the territories located near the Turkish border from YPG," a Syrian FSA commander speaking on the condition of anonymity was quoted by the Russian Sputnik News as saying.