Syrian Democratic Forces Down Turkish Chopper in Afrin - Reports

Sputik

The Arab-Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) expressed readiness to defend themselves and the Kurdish people against the Turkish military operation in the Syrian Afrin the same day, Ankara began the offensive. The Syrian Democratic Forces have downed a Turkish helicopter in the Syrian city of Afrin, an SDF representative told Sputnik Saturday.

Earlier this day, the SDF reported that the group's militia had downed two Turkish reconnaissance Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) in the village of Adama, northern Syria. The group also engaged in skirmishes with a Turkish convoy in the Chia district of Afrin and with Turkish forces, supported by the Free Syrian Army, in Qastal Ma'af.

The reports came amid tha statement by the Turkish General Staff, saying that the Turkish forces had eliminated 394 Kurdish and Daesh fighters and the country's aviation has destroyed 340 targets during the operation. At the same time, according to another report by the SDF, made public the day before, the group had killed some 308 Turkish troops.

Turkey has been conducting the Olive Branch operation in Syria's Afrin since January 20, after the US stated that it would train a border protection force comprising the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), affiliated with the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), which Turkey considers to be a terrorist group.