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The U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have halted its security operations against ISIS in northeastern Syria as result of the ongoing Turkish attack on the region, Reuters reported on October 9, citing two U.S. officials and a Kurdish military source.
“The SDF stopped the anti-ISIS operations because it’s impossible to carry out any operation while you are being threatened by a large army right on the northern border,” Reuters quoted the Kurdish military source as saying
One of the U.S. officials revealed that the suspension also impacted U.S. training of “stabilization forces” in Syria.
The SDF had warned that it would halt anti-terror operations in northeast Syria in case of any Turkish attack on the region. The Kurdish-dominated group also warned that its troops may not be able to guard some 11,000 ISIS-linked captives in case of such attack.
A third U.S. offical told Reuters that the SDF was still guarding prisons holding the captured ISIS fighters. However, he noted that a small number of SDF forces had been relocated ahead of the Turkish offensive.
The Turkish military and the so-called National Syrian Army (NSA) launched Operation Peace Spring in northeast Syria a few hours earlier. So far, at least two civilians have been killed as a result of Turkish airstrikes on the region.