By Kerem Kocalar
SANLIURFA (AA) - A footage shot by Anadolu Agency on Tuesday showed PKK/YPG terrorists’ activities ahead of an imminent Turkey’s military operation east of the Euphrates River in northern Syria.
The terrorists covered roofs and windows of some houses along Turkey-Syria border, the footage showed.
They used construction equipment and took up positions by setting up tarpaulins in the wooden area.
The footage also showed some trucks coming from Rasulayn city center to the border area unloaded excavation soil.
The Turkish Armed Forces also continues patrols in the region.
- Establishment of safe zone in northern Syria
Turkey has long championed the idea of terrorist-free safe zones in Syria and stressed ridding the area of the terrorist YPG/PKK, the Syrian branch of the PKK, as well as resettling Syrian migrants currently in Turkey.
In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union -- has been responsible for the deaths of some 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants.
Since 2011, over 5 million civilians have become refugees, and Turkey hosts over 3.6 million of them, being the country hosting the highest number of refugees in the world.
The country stressed that forming a safe zone is essential for eliminating the PKK/YPG terror threat and for the safe return of Syrian refugees to their country.
Turkey considers the Syrian refugee issue a humanitarian issue and will let Syrians safely return to their homes.
On Aug. 7, Turkish and U.S. military officials agreed to set up a safe zone in northern Syria and develop a peace corridor to facilitate the movement of displaced Syrians who want to return home. They also agreed to establish a joint operations center.
U.S. and Turkish troops carried out their first joint ground patrol for the zone on Sept. 9.
While Turkey welcomes the joint patrols, it has also said the U.S. is not doing enough to set up the safe zone properly.
Since 2016, Turkey’s Euphrates Shield and Olive Branch operations in northwestern Syria have liberated the region from YPG/PKK and Daesh terrorists, making it possible for nearly 400,000 Syrians who fled the violence to return home to Western Syria.
Turkey is ready to launch another operation in Syria to secure its borders by eliminating terrorist elements to ensure the safe return of Syrian refugees and Syria’s territorial integrity.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced Sunday that Turkey is ready to launch "Operation Peace Spring" east of the Euphrates River in northern Syria to clear the region of terrorists.
*Writing and contribution by Busra Nur Bilgic Cakmak