Turkish military and Free Syrian Army (FSA) have established a humanitarian corridor in Syria’s Afrin region, enabling civilians to leave the operation zone in a secure way.
According to the Anadolu Agency correspondents on the ground, the corridor was set up for civilians, who can leave Afrin’s city center from the south after Turkish army and the FSA fighters surrounded the city center.
The Turkish General Staff has said the center of Afrin has been surrounded since Monday as a result of the ongoing operations in the region and "critically important areas" have been seized.
Since the launch of the operation, the Turkish troops and opposition fighters have liberated 212 locations, including five town centers, 175 villages, 37 strategic mountains and hills, and one YPG/PKK base.
According to Bekir Bozdag, deputy prime minister and government spokesperson, the operation has liberated a total of 1,102 square kilometers (425 square miles) from the terrorist threat.
On Jan. 20, Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch to clear YPG/PKK-Daesh terrorists from Afrin.
According to the Turkish military, the operation aims to establish security and stability along Turkey’s borders and the region as well as to protect Syrians from terrorist oppression and cruelty.
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 terror targets are being destroyed and that "utmost care" is being taken to avoid harming civilians.
Reporting by Selen Temizer, Esref Musa, Levent Tok and Burak Karacaoglu:Writing by Nilay Kar