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UN report on Afrin contradicted by facts on ground

UN report on Afrin contradicted by facts on ground
Report issued on Feb. 7 made several claims, which are contrary to facts on ground

By Selen Temizer

ANKARA (AA) - The United Nations seems to have included claims, which are contrary to the facts, in its report on recent developments in northwestern Syria.

The report released by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) on Feb. 7, claimed that civilians were displaced “from peripheral communities towards central Afrin district”.

However, the fact is civilians were forcibly directed to the Afrin’s center by the PYD/PKK terrorists. The terrorist group dug ditches around Afrin’s center and build defensive walls, and was preparing to use the civilians as shields in possible clashes.

Although the report said there was an Internet outage in Afrin, Anadolu Agency correspondents on the ground reported the PYD/PKK terrorist organization deliberately cut the Internet to prevent the people’s access to information and communication.

The report further claimed that on Feb. 6 “many civilians, who are not originally from Afrin, were allowed to cross to GoS [Government of Syria]-held areas”, but on the contrary, PYD/PKK asked for high bribes from those, who were not from Afrin but wanted to leave the city.

- Families separated

The UN report said families were separated by “restrictions on freedom of movement targeting adult males.”

Last July, Anadolu Agency reported the PYD/PKK terrorists separated families by forcibly recruiting their men. The terrorist group was reported to have been forcing young people to fight for them in the name of “self-defense”.

Some of the villagers hid on the mountains, while some of them hid in safer places, Anadolu Agency reported.

The PYD/PKK also takes old men hostage in a bid to force their sons to return and join the organization.

In the report, it was also claimed the education was suspended in Afrin, whereas the information regarding its reason was not given. But it is widely known that children are taken away from their homes and threatened to be sent to the fronts by the terrorists.

- Aims to scare civilians

The report also claimed Azaz district was targeted on Feb. 3, 4 and 5. It said one of the attacks “hit a vehicle carrying civilians, killing one child and injuring six people who were reportedly transferred to hospitals in Turkey for treatment".

However, Anadolu Agency correspondents in Azaz district reported these attacks were carried out by PYD/PKK. On Feb. 3, seven missiles were fired to a market place in Azaz, which injured four civilians.

On Feb. 4, a rocket attack was launched, which hit a refugee camp in the district. No casualties were reported in the incident.

The last attack in question took place on Feb. 5, when PYD/PKK terrorists in Afrin fired a missile from Mt. Bafilun, and killed one civilian and injured five others.

The rockets fired by the terrorists to target Turkey’s border provinces of Hatay and Kilis often hit residential areas in Azaz.

The terrorist organization poses a threat for the Operation Euphrates Shield areas, as well.

Operation Euphrates Shield was conducted jointly by the Turkish Armed Forces and the Free Syrian Army (FSA), from August 2016 to late March 2017, to improve security, support coalition forces and eliminate terror threats along the Turkish border.

- No water shortage

The report also claimed that water was limited in Afrin district as “the provision of water through the piped network stopped on Jan. 27” allegedly due to airstrikes of Turkish Armed Forces near a dam.

However, the civilians in the villages liberated from terror and Anadolu Agency correspondents shot videos of Turkish and Free Syrian Army forces providing clean water, food and other type of aid materials.

While the report claimed “other sources reported that it was due to lack of fuel to operate the water pumps,” the correspondents of Anadolu Agency in Afrin reported the water infrastructure in the area was being operated well and there was no water shortage.

On Jan. 20, Turkey 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 to protect Syrians from oppression and cruelty of terrorists.

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 also said only terrorist targets were being destroyed and "utmost importance" was being put on avoiding harm to 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.

source: News Feed
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