By Yusuf Hatip
BRUSSELS (AA) - PYD/PKK terrorist group leader Salih Muslim used a fake image during a press conference in Brussels to defame Turkey's counter-terror operation northern Syria.
Turkey on Jan. 20 launched Operation Olive Branch to remove PYD/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Afrin.
During a press meeting at the Brussels Press Club, the terror leader displayed a picture of civilians fleeing attacks as false evidence of his accusation that Turkey attacked civilians in Afrin.
Later it was revealed that the photograph was taken by Agence France-Presse in Eastern Ghouta, a Damascus suburb, where civilians were attacked by the Bashar al-Assad regime.
The meeting, organized mostly by PYD/PKK sympathizers, was followed by local media.
Prior to the meeting, Muslim also shared a fake photograph on social media to defame Turkey's ongoing operation.
On his Twitter account, Muslim retweeted a photograph showing injured children with a message: "Turkey massacres in Afrin," referring to Operation Olive Branch.
However, it was later revealed that the photograph was a Sept. 14, 2014 picture from Eastern Ghouta, then under a crippling siege by the Assad regime.
The photograph showed three children and a baby, who were injured after an air attack by the regime forces in Douma district of Eastern Ghouta.
Muslim is listed as a most-wanted terrorist by the Turkish Interior Ministry with a bounty of nearly $1 million for his head.
According to the Turkish General Staff, the ongoing operation aims to establish security and stability along Turkey's borders and the region as well as protect Syrians from terrorist cruelty and oppression.
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 has also said that only terrorist targets are being destroyed and "utmost care" is being taken to avoid harming any civilians.
Afrin has been a major hideout for the PYD/PKK since July 2012, when the Assad regime in Syria left the city to the terror group without a fight.