By Jeyhun Aliyev
ANKARA (AA) - Turkish security forces rounded up five PKK/YPG terrorists during simultaneous operations in northern Syria, the National Defense Ministry said on Monday.
The commandos arrested the terrorists plotting attacks in houses they were hiding in Tal Abyad, falling inside the area of Turkey's anti-terror offensive, Operation Peace Spring, the ministry said in a statement.
During the bust, weapons, ammunitions, digital materials and documents related to the terror group were also seized, it added.
Since 2016, Turkey has launched a trio of successful anti-terrorist operations across its border into northern Syria to prevent the formation of a terror corridor: Operations Euphrates Shield (2016), Olive Branch (2018), and Peace Spring (October 2019).
Operation Peace Spring was launched to eliminate terrorist YPG/PKK and Daesh/ISIS elements east of the Euphrates River to secure Turkey’s borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees, and ensure Syria’s territorial integrity.
Ankara wants YPG/PKK terrorists to withdraw from the region so a safe zone can be created to pave the way for the safe return of 2 million refugees.
On Oct. 22, Ankara and Moscow reached a deal under which YPG/PKK terrorists would pull back 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) south of Turkey’s border with Syria, and security forces from Turkey and Russia would mount joint patrols there.
In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and EU -- has been responsible for the deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants. The YPG is the PKK’s Syrian offshoot.