On March 17, the Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) and the Free Syrian Army (FSA) reached the entrance to the Syrian city of Afrin controlled by the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG). According to pro-Turkish sources, the TAF and the FSA engaged YPG members in the southwestern gates of Afrin aiming to enter the city.
Pro-YPG sources claim that multiple Turkish artillery and air strikes are now hitting the city.
Additionally, Turkey-led forces continued working to isolate the YPG-held city from the northern direction. However, the main clashes are now taking west of southwest of Afrin.
On March 17, the TAF’s general staff released a statement saying that 3,567 “terrorists” had been neutralized since the start of Turkey’s Operation Olive Branch in Afrin.
The Turkish military also released a video of a hospital in the city of afrin. The video is aimed to prove that the TAF had not been attacked the hospital.
“It is closely being monitored that vile propaganda against the Turkish Armed Forces is being spread, falsely claiming that buildings and vehicles were set ablaze by the Turkish military. In reality, it was being carried out by terrorists in Afrin city centre,” the TAF said commenting on pro-YPG reprots that the Turkish forces had bombed the facility.
The reports claiming that the hospital in Afrin was bombed by the Turkish Armed Forces are fake. pic.twitter.com/5hIHLQouIo
— TSK (@TSKGnkur) 17 March 2018
However, some users say that the video allegedly shows the “damage” caused by some military actions.
No my friend, sorry… after I took a nice look, it is really the hospital in the video, what the TSK tweeted! and it shows the damage! pic.twitter.com/SCPNeC04qw
— Shlovan Kellerie (@ShlovanKellerie) 17 March 2018
On March 16, reports appeared that a Turkish airstrike had hit a hospital in the center of Afrin.
“There was an air strike on Afrin’s general hospital, it’s the only big hospital,” Reuters quoted Rojhat Roj, a YPG media official in Afrin. “The air and artillery strikes are ongoing on the town.”