By Fatma Esma Arslan
ANKARA (AA) - Continuing their online smear campaign, supporters of the PYD/PKK terror group on Friday posted old photographs misrepresented as recent photos from Syria’s northwestern Afrin region -- including one actually showing the effects of its own terrorist attack.
In one especially blatant piece of disinformation, a photo mislabeled “Turkish Armed Forces targeting civilians” in fact shows the aftermath of a PYD/PKK terror attack on two hospitals on Jan. 19 in Aleppo’s Azaz district bordering Turkey.
Another picture of an injured child shared on Twitter said "Save the children in Afrin," but in truth the picture was taken on Dec. 18, 2015, at a field hospital in Syria.
Another photo shared on social media implied that children are being killed in Afrin, but the picture actually was taken in November 2010 in the Gaza Strip, Palestine.
Earlier, pro-PYD/PKK accounts posted another photo -- the winner of the 2016 Anadolu Agency Istanbul Photo Awards -- misrepresenting it as a recent picture from Afrin. In fact, the photo shows a child who was injured in Aleppo, Syria two years ago.
Another photo posted on Twitter claimed to show “Turkish soldiers taken hostage in Afrin," but was actually a March 2014 Anadolu Agency photo showing 20 soldiers who had been executed by the Daesh terror group in Iraq.
This continued a pattern of pictures on pro-PYD/PKK social media accounts turning out to be photos from years ago and thousands of miles away.
The photos preceded Operation Olive Branch and are completely unrelated.
After Anadolu Agency reported on them, some of the accounts posting such fake news and images were shut down.
On Jan. 20, the Turkish army launched Operation Olive Branch to remove PYD/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Afrin. 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.
The military also said only terror targets are being destroyed and the "utmost care" is being taken to avoid harming civilians.