Syrian War Report – February 6, 2018: YPG Sends Large Force To Combat Turkish Army In Afrin

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A large convoy of the People’s Protection Units (YPG) and the Sinjar Resistance Units (YBS) was filmed in the city Afrin overnight on February 6. The convoy reportedly consisted of over 100 vehicles, including buses. According to various sources, the total number of YPG/YBS fighters in the convoy was between 1,500 and 5,000, most likely the real number is about 2,000. This force will definitely participate in the ongoing clashes between the YPG and the Turkish Armed Forces (TAF).

Reports say that the convoy had reached Afrin from the Kurdish-held area in northeastern Syria and northwestern Iraq through the government-held area east of Aleppo and link this development with the Russian Su-25 shootdown, which took place in the province of Idlib on February 3. According to this version, the YPG, the YBS and other Kurdish-dominated militias prepared these reinforcements some time ago, but were able to reach an agreement with the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) to reach Afrin only recently. The appearance and the usage of man-portable air-defense systems (MANPADs) by the so-called moderate opposition promoted and backed by the Turkish leadership became a trigger of the decision to allow the Kurdish reinforcements to Afrin.

While Turkish media and officials continue to blame the Syrian-Iranian-Russian alliance for the ongoing operation against Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda), the TAF had done almost nothing to combat the terrorist group despite the deployment of its forces near the areas held by it.

On the other hand, the Assad government is also interested in the weakening of the Turkish influence in northern Syria. So, there is a chance this decision was the initiative of Damascus.

The Syrian military officially announced on February 5 that it had deployed new air defences and anti-aircraft missiles to frontlines in the provinces of Aleppo and Idlib. On the same time, reports appeared that the Turkish Air Force was forced to limit its air campaign against the YPG in Afrin under the Russian pressure. The fact is that the number of Turkish airstrikes had been close to zero over the past few days.

In any case, Ankara faced the consequences of its double-faced policy towards Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS).

In the Afrin area, the TAF and the Free Syrian Army continued their operation against the YPG and captured the villages of Sourkeh, Al-Amod and Dekmet Tash as well as Sarghaya Hill, according to pro-Turkish sources.

According to the Turkish General Staff, about 1,000 so-called “terrorists” have been “neutralized” since the start of Operation Olive Branch.

However, this number is likely far from the reality considering the lack of any major TAF progress on the ground.

In turn, Kurdish militias have used at least 12 anti-tank guided missiles against the TAF and the FSA. According to existing reports and videos, the YPG targeted three Leopard 2A4 battle tanks, two M-60 Sabra battle tanks, three bulldozers and four stationary targets.

On February 5, the TAF launched another attempt to establish an observation post in the militant-held town of Al-Eis and even launched construction works there. The country’s general staff even said that its forces had started reconnaissance for two additional observation points.

Later on the same day, reports appeared the TAF and pro-government forces engaged each other in an artillery duel there. A Turkish service member was reportedly killed. The situation over this issue remains unclear.

Some Syrian sources describe the Al-Eis observation point as an attempt to limit the SAA anti-terrorist operation in the area.

Meanwhile, HTS continued its attempts to develop momentum against the SAA in the Tell Sultan area in eastern idlib. Fierce clashes are ongoing there.

The SAA, the Tiger Forces and the National Defense Forces (NDF) further advanced on ISIS in the northeastern Hama pocket and liberated the villages of Rasm Kibar, Sawwanat Hamrah, Uwayjat Qana, Tal Shur, Malihah Kabirah, Malihah Saghirah, Rasm al-Mafkar, Abu Khanadiq, Maasaran and Buyad as-Saffaf. The advance is ongoing.

In eastern Damascus, the SAA and the Republican Guard advanced on positions of HTS in the Ghubair area and captured some factory buildings there. If government forces are able to secure the southern flank of the Armoured Vehicles Base, they will stabilize the situation in Eastern Ghouta. Meanwhile, Ahrar al-Sham, HTS and other militant groups use the besieged base to pressure government forces there.

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  • Joe

    Lesson to learn .. never play play with the Russians. You get killed many times over.
    Never fails .

  • paul ( original )

    May be the Russian should rethink their decision to sell the Turks S-400,
    otherwise it may not be a MANPAD that downs a Russian jet but one of
    their supplied missiles. Am I missing something from my
    understanding?

    • @Inc2Get

      Yes you are, the manpads were not delivered from turkey. Don’t get me wrong, I hate turkey but the man pad was captured from the Kurds during the Afrin operation, according to video proof and evidence uploaded by militants. U can search for it if u want. After the video release, reports surfaced that some factions of the “jihadi rebels” from the Afrin operation went back to idlib to fight of the SAA and used it on the aircraft. Turkey allowed the jihadis to have possession of the manpad without seizing it because if they managed to shoot down a Russian or Syrians aircraft, they would blame the US as it’s an American manpad which can be proven by the missiles fired and from the video. Russia of course will blame the US.

      • Xanatos

        interesting. Not sure turkey would get away with that. If afrin Kurds had these MANPADS, then they were planning to rebel from Syria in the future. Us MANPADS have FOF software to prevent them from shooting American (and Turkish) jets.

        • Eric Holt

          America supplied manpads some time ago to the kurds, just in case turkey did attack them. That is part of what turkey was upset about other than simply Kurds. This is mostly just an “in your face stuff you “from turkey to america. Turky is taking a real caning from kurds at moment..and thats without any real assistance. Turkey can only look like a real dick at the final outcome! :)

      • Sputnik Stranger
        • javier

          right and it could be any group buying that manpad on the black market, am i missing something

      • ilme

        Have you ever considered that it also could have been that they never seized it from Kurds but just pretended they did so they can blame them?

        That’s the thing with internet theories, they all sound well and smart but in reality there are so many options of what possible happened that most of the time none of us can tell.

    • PJ London

      I would be fairly sure that S-400 missiles had a FoF (Friend or Foe) identification system built in which would preclude using them against Russian targets. It is because of FoF identification that Turkey wants an alternative to the American weapons and missiles.

      • Kara

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    • Bob

      My very basic understanding is guided missile weapons system designer’s engineer ‘backdoor’ code or key into the systems – this is means to disable or impair a missile from operating at full range of available capacity. Presumably like all quality engineering this involves redundancy – a combination of fallback options. It has long been reported that after the British suffered direct Exocet missile hits on their Naval fleet off Falkland Islands by Argentine air force, Thatcher desperately contacted the French government for technical assistance and access to any backdoor code to impair the few remaining Argentine Excocet’s, excellent, performance. The French manufacturers actually had service technicians on ground in Argentina at time, and after leaving Thatcher to boil over for couple of days the French government complied.

      • paul ( original )

        I am sure you are correct and there are technical ‘safeguards’. What
        goes through the back of my mind is something I learned from South
        Front. They said that during the Georgian conflict Russia could not
        defeat the air defence system they had supplied to the Georgians.
        Beyond this I have very little knowledge.

  • HardHawk

    it is about time to wake up all who supported a turkish invasion.

  • Lupus

    Good development . I hope they will be able to kick out the Turks and their proxy jihad puppets or at least give them very hard times and big losses

    • Jonathan Cohen

      Bad development. Those SDF fighters are needed to finish off ISIS in the Southeast Dier Ezzor. Sending them to Afrin will allow ISIS to regroup.

      • PZIVJ

        Seems the US coalition wants this ISIS group to stick around for a few more years.
        But their dream of a caliphate has been ABORTED.
        Your mind is slipping, no doubt.

  • alejoeisabel

    It would be insane for the Turks to give Manpads to its proxies and to shoot down a Russian jet. It is more likely that Israel or the US provided those Manpads to their Al Qaeda proxies.

    • paul ( original )

      May be they supplied it so they could shoot down Syrian planes, with a
      good promise not to shoot down anything else.

    • @Inc2Get

      The manpads were not delivered from turkey. Don’t get me wrong, I hate turkey but the man pad was captured from the Kurds during the Afrin operation, according to video proof and evidence uploaded by militants. U can search for it if u want. After the video release, reports surfaced that some factions of the “jihadi rebels” from the Afrin operation went back to idlib to fight of the SAA and used it on the aircraft. Turkey allowed the jihadis to have possession of the manpad without seizing it because if they managed to shoot down a Russian or Syrians aircraft, they would blame the US as it’s an American manpad which can be proven by the missiles fired and from the video. Russia of course will blame the US.

    • Eric Holt

      Are you trying to say turkey is doing anything rational at the moment…not likely!

    • Rob

      You are absolutely right. US, ISRAEL AND TURKEY are one.

  • Lloyd Yona

    Erdogan Murderess vendetta on the Kurdish groups. The meaning on so called Olive Branch never mine of the Knock on wood is .>>>>>>> If you offer an olive branch to someone, you say or do something in order to show that you want to end a disagreement or quarrel.>>>>>> = Erdogan mad man on the Loss.

    • Jonathan Cohen

      ISIS is still worse than Erdogan and YPG needs to finish them off FIRST, for banning abortion. Moving fighters West will allow ISIS to regroup in the East. Bad mistake!

  • Behold a Pale Horse

    It’s kicking off pru

  • Rob

    Turkey have created so many problems for his own country that its look impossible that in future any body cost vote to him. Erdogan have not defeated Kurds in his own country so how he gonna defeat them in Syria.

    Its so easy to deal with Kurds because they are not only in Turkey but also in Syria, Iraq and Iran. To control Kurds then Turkey need to stop supporting different terrorist organizations in Syria and sincerely join forces with Syria, Iraq and Iran. In this way they can solve the issue of Kurds without any casualties both sides. Both sides are humans in Turkish army and in Kurds. They should not die but they should live in this world like normal citizens. God have born Kurds and not Turkey and God will protect them.
    —————————————————————————————————————————————

    • Eric Holt

      Kurds are a reality…. they make up 40% of turkeys population and 30+% of syrias population. Then there is Iraqi Kurds also. These guys are major players and power in ME even without a country. Until 1925 there about…. the whole region belonged to kurds, oppressed under the ottoman empire and then spread out when england and france subdivided the ME and gave all the land to wandering arabs to settle down on and forgot all about the major population of kurds. I can see a new kurdistan close… and ME policies will change! This is what I think is behind americas dogged support of kurds and low profile in syrian war. It controls nearly a third of syria though kurds now anyways and kurds are happy to have US air bases in their area.

      • Rob

        If Kurds see power and strength in themselves then they should lead the united Syria. If Kurds see weakness in themselves then they will definitely trust in enemies of Syria that is US, Israel and Turkey because enemies of Syria always wants to divide Syria into small parts to deminish its power. If Syria divided then the history of Kurds will be dark. Kurds will be known as traitors in human history. History knows that union is strength. At the moment there are three main enemies of Syria that is US, TURKEY, ISRAEL and they are sponsoring all terrorist groups in Syria. Those nations that support them or trust them will definitely be in lose and their dreams will never come true.
        —————————————————-

      • Ronald

        Kurds are 35 – 40 % of Turkey’s population , but only 8 – 10 % of Syria’s population . What is behind America’s support of the Kurds is using them to gain control of a part of Syria and Iraq , on which to build air bases . Americas involvement is anything but low profile , they openly support Al Qaeda the “moderate rebels” , and by action protect ISIS.
        The Kurds are just another proxy army to them , used to fracture and partition Syria and Iraq . The Kurds will be happy when US air bases leave their area .

    • gustavo

      Maybe your are forgetting that: 1. Turkey support terrorists in Syria. 2. Turkey made business with terrorists with Syria oil. 3. Turkey is making business with terrorists with Syria industrial part dismantled by terrorists. 4. Turkey took part in the attack to Russia basis with drones (providing high technology parts to terrorists). 5. Turkey downed Russia plane. 6. Turkey and Kurds are responsible of Armenian genocide. 7. Turkey is USA-NATO allied with military basis and nuclear weapons in its land. 8. Turkey has been the Israel-USA-NATO right hand to use Assad as a pretext to destroy Syria.

      • Rob

        You are absolutely right. If Turkey don’t support terrorists in Syria then how it is possible for Turkey to freely move in Idlib.
        Turkey have betrayed Syrian nation and supported Zionist terror plot against Syria. Turkey have provided military base to US and to NATO Zionist air forces. Turkey is the part of all problems. US and NATO cannot interfere or invade Syria without the support of Turkey. Same for Saudi Arabia that betrayed Yemen and lead illegal Zionist coalition forces and invade Yemen.
        ——————————————————————————————————————

  • Sputnik Stranger

    Thousands of CIVILIANS from Shengal, Jazeera and Euphrates regions and Manbij reached Afrin Canton, not thousands of fighters.

    https://anfenglish.com/rojava/thousands-from-across-northern-syria-reach-afrin-24735

  • Sputnik Stranger
  • dutchnational

    SF always eager to report turkish media propaganda and not as eager to report Turkish losses. Fact of the matter is TSK has hardly any real gains to show for 2.5 weeks of fighting, shelling and bombing and one can see turkish lossess rising rapidly with the decrease of bombing.

    It is debatable whether TSK can hold its lines given a decrease in bombing and rising reinforcements of SDF.

  • matt

    Hopefully this will stop the fighting!!

  • adzsiam

    Wouldn’t be surprised if the Syrian / Russia / Iranian coalition gave some giveaways (intel, equipment, etc.) besides the free access way to Afrin. Turkey certainly is the odd-one-out to both sides of the conflict.

    • PZIVJ

      Like some ATGM reloads added to convoy when they stopped in Aleppo area go get petrol :D

  • Astar Roth

    Please guys, before posting something like Turks betrayed Syria and etc. take a look at, Russian Tv (RT) about issue.
    Thanks.

  • Rob

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rBRxt5ufnGg

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=encHlimCC7U

    Israeli soldiers have manhandled a group of European diplomats and seized trucks carrying tents in the West Bank… Diplomats were from Briton, France, Spain, Iceland, Australia and EU. The Zionist terror headquarter (Israel) is moving so fast towards its destruction. G-d says in Torah Leviticus 26:33
    And if you do not listen to Me, and do not keep all these commandments… and I will scatter you among the nations, and send the sword after you, and your land will be desolate, and your cities destroyed.

    The Zionist terror network headquarter (Israel) established in 1948 by illegal European migrants in Palestine. Israel each year violently persecute thousands of civilians in Palestine. Each year Israel kidnap thousands of adults and kids from the streets. Israel each year evacuate Hundreds of villages and towns by gunpoints and then demolish them and instead new buildings they erect for illegal European migrants.

    Peaceful protests with flags, banners and placards is the legal right of all civilians. Anger eat wise. Anger is the sign of failure and frustration. Palestinian youths should not react with stones and knives but remain calm. Indeed soon Palestine will be freed. For a strong nation Education, unity, journalism, justice and a strong young qualified, English spoken leader, is very important.
    ————————————————————————————————————————————-

  • achiles Greeko

    Greek people wish to support Kurdish struggle against aggresive turks.
    We hope greek government send weapons to kurds in order to neutraize stupid turks.

  • gustavo

    The missile used in MAMPAD systems (Russian or USA or China) make a lot of smoke during its trajectory to its target. As far as I have noticed on the videos shown the down of the Su-25, I can not see this smoke trajectory of the missile……just the hit and down of the plane. Has anybody noticed this ?