By Kerem Kocalar
KILIS, Turkey (AA) - Turkey’s border Kilis province has welcomed on Sunday the capturing of the strategic Mount Bursaya in northern Syria by Turkish military and Free Syrian Army (FSA).
Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Kilis’ mayor Hasan Kara said the capturing of Mount Bursaya has brought joy to the people of Kilis.
The capture came after Turkish forces and FSA fighters under the Turkish-led Operation Olive Branch advanced to the peak from the northwestern Syrian city of Azaz.
The terrorist PYD/PKK has used Mount Bursaya to target civilians in the center of Turkey’s Kilis province and Syria’s Azaz district through mortar shells, artillery, and missiles.
"The success which emerged in such a short time displays our country's and military's power. From now on, it is more difficult for the terrorists to fire rockets on our town."
Kara also said the Syrian refugees hosted in Kilis will now safely return to their homes after formation of a secure zone in Syria’s northwestern region of Afrin.
Kilis Chamber of Commerce and Industry head Mehmet Erdal Ondes also said they welcomed the development in Mount Bursaya.
Ondes said an important phase has passed after securing Kilis. "We believe that the upcoming process will provide peace to entire Afrin," he added.
Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch on Jan. 20 to rid Afrin, northwestern Syria of PYD/PKK and Daesh terrorists.
According to the Turkish General Staff, the operation aims to establish security and stability along Turkey’s borders and the region as well as protect Syrians from terrorist oppression and cruelty.