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Kurdish fighters join Turkey's Afrin operation

In its intervention, Turkey is capitalizing on Kurdish fighters affiliated with the Free Syrian Army who want to liberate Afrin from Kurdish rivals.
Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army fighters are seen near Mount Barsaya, northeast of Afrin, Syria January 23, 2018. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi - RC17FC1FEC20

ALEPPO, Syria — The Free Syrian Army (FSA) and Turkish forces have made remarkable advances against the People’s Protection Units (YPG) in Afrin. According to the Turkish command, Operation Olive Branch has managed to take control of seven villages and strategic locations in the Afrin countryside, including the main road connecting Rajo and Shaykh al-Hadid.

Several Kurdish factions affiliated with the FSA are participating in Olive Branch, launched Jan. 20, to fight the YPG — the armed wing of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) controlling Afrin in the northwest of Aleppo.

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