The Latest: Turkey says allied forces reach center of Afrin

The Latest on the Syria conflict (all times local):

10:15 a.m.

Turkey’s president says allied Syrian forces have taken control of the town center of Afrin, the target of a nearly two-month offensive against a Kurdish militia.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan says the Syrian fighters, supported by Turkish armed forces, seized control of the town center early Sunday. He says many of the Kurdish fighters have fled.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the Turkey-backed forces have taken control of half the town, with heavy fighting still underway.

Turkey views the Kurdish forces in the Afrin enclave along the border as terrorists because of their links to the Kurdish insurgency inside Turkey.

Turkish troops along with Syrian opposition fighters launched a cross-border offensive on Jan. 20. Thousands of civilians have fled in recent days amid heavy airstrikes.

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10 a.m.

A Turkish news agency and Syrian activists say Turkey-backed forces have reached the center of the Syrian town of Afrin, the target of a nearly two-month-old Turkish offensive against a Syrian Kurdish militia.

Turkey views the Kurdish forces in the Afrin enclave along the border as terrorists because of their links to the Kurdish insurgency inside Turkey.

Turkey’s private Dogan news agency on Sunday reported that the Turkish-backed Syrian fighters “established control” in the town center. Footage showed armed men walking among derelict buildings amid sporadic gunfire.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the Syrian fighters entered the town with Turkish forces amid intensive airstrikes. Thousands of residents have fled in recent days.

Categories: World News

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