By S. Ahmet Aytac
ANKARA (AA) - At least 649 PYD/PKK and Daesh terrorists have been "neutralized" since the beginning of Operation Olive Branch in Syria's Afrin, according to Turkish General Staff on Tuesday.
Turkish authorities often use the word "neutralized" in their statements to imply the terrorists in question either surrendered or were killed or captured.
In a statement, the military said Turkish Armed Forces had destroyed three terrorist targets and neutralized 33 terrorists in airstrikes that were carried out overnight.
On Jan. 20, Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch to clear PYD/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Afrin, northwestern Syria.
According to the Turkish General Staff, the operation aims to establish security and stability along Turkey’s borders and the region as well as to protect Syrians from terrorist oppression and cruelty.
The operation is being carried out under the framework of Turkey's rights based on international law, UN Security Council resolutions, its self-defense rights under the UN charter, and respect for Syria's territorial integrity, it said.
The military also said only terror targets were being destroyed and the "utmost care and sensitivity" were being used to not harm civilians.