World, Middle East

White Helmets resume operations in liberated Afrin

Turkish military, Free Syrian Army liberated city earlier this month from PYD/PKK terrorist group

30.03.2018
White Helmets resume operations in liberated Afrin

Ankara

By Omer Koparan

AFRIN, Syria 

The White Helmets civil-defense agency, which was expelled from Syria's northwestern city of Afrin by PYD/PKK terrorists three years ago, has now resumed its activities in the city.

Members of the agency are now clearing the rubble piled up earlier by PYD/PKK terrorists to halt the advance of the Turkish military and the Free Syrian Army, which together liberated the city on March 18.

They are also defusing the numerous mines and explosives planted in the city by the terrorist group.

Ismail Nassan, a civil-defense official, told Anadolu Agency that the White Helmets were also providing Afrin residents with potable water.

“We want to open permanent offices in and around Afrin,” Nassan said. “But our first objective is to fill the ditches dug into the roads by the PKK.”

“Lots of mines have been planted [in Afrin],” he added. “We have defused most of them, however, and filled up most of the ditches using bulldozers.”

According to Ferhat Sheikh Abdi, a former municipal employee in Afrin, civil-defense workers have already cleared the city’s main roads of landmines and unexploded ordnance.

Syria has only just begun to emerge from a devastating conflict that began in 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on demonstrators with unexpected ferocity.

Since then, hundreds of thousands of people have been killed and more than 10 million displaced, according to UN officials.

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