Buildings smolder in the distance in this unverified photo from northern Syria on Wednesday. Photo: YPG Press Office
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — Turkish military and the People's Protection Units (YPG) have exchanged fire on the Syrian-Turkish border on Wednesday, with both sides claim they responded in retaliation.
A YPG media outlet reported that the Turkish artillery shelled at least four villages in the border area of Darbasiyah in al-Hassakah province.
It did not report any casualties, but added that the YPG had closed the road connecting Darasiyah with Ser Kaniyah “for the safety of people.”
The Turkish military announced Wednesday that they continued their strikes against the Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK) positions in Iraq, and the YPG in Syria, the state-run Anadolu Agency reported.
Turkey considers the YPG to be linked to the PKK; whereas, the YPG, the armed wing of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) have stated it is only ideologically similar to the PKK.
The US has been backing the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) against ISIS in Syria. The SDF is primarily comprised of the YPG and the Syrian Arab Coalition (SAC), according to the coalition.
The Turksih military added that they retaliated against attacks carried out from areas controlled by the YPG in Syria, targeting two military outposts in the Turkish city of Hatay.
Regarding Iraq, the military said that they had “neutralized” a number of PKK fighters in Zap area on the Kurdistan Region’s border with Turkey, claiming that they were trying to stage attacks against Turkey.
Violent clashes resumed when peace talks collapsed between the PKK and the Turkish government in June 2015 with the army attacking guerrilla positions inside cities in southeastern Turkey.
PKK fighters often traverse the mountainous border regions between the three countries.
Since Friday, the Turkish military has been striking PKK bases in the Kurdistan Region.
On Tuesday, Turkey bombed in Shingal killing a Shingal Protection Units (YBS) fighter.
A YBS commander, Mazloum Shingali, confirmed the death of a fighter in the airstrikes.
Additionally on Tuesday, YPG reported Turkish airstrikes had killed 20 of its fighters in Qara Shouk.
“Twenty of our fighters were killed and 18 more injured as a result of the Turkish airstrikes,” Redur Khalil, the spokesperson for the YPG said.