The PKK/YPG terrorists have violated the safe zone deal with the U.S. 20 times since it came into effect on Oct. 17, according to Turkish Defense Ministry on Sunday.
The ministry also said a Turkish soldier was martyred and another one injured during a patrol when PKK/YPG terrorists attacked them in Syria’s Tal-Abyad region east of Euphrates River.
Security forces retaliated against the terrorist attack within the exercise of their right to self defense, the ministry said in a statement.
The ministry wished God’s mercy on the martyred soldier and offered condolences to his family, Turkish Armed Forces and Turkish nation.
On Oct. 9, Turkey had launched Operation Peace Spring to eliminate terrorists from northern Syria in order to secure Turkey’s borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees and ensure Syria’s territorial integrity.
On Oct. 17, Turkey agreed to pause its Operation Peace Spring for 120 hours to allow the withdrawal of terrorist YPG/PKK forces from the planned safe zone.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence also agreed on Turkey having 20 miles (32 kilometers) of safe zone south of the Turkish border in Syria.
Ankara wants to clear northern Syria east of the Euphrates River of the terrorist PKK and its Syrian offshoot, the YPG/PKK.
In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union -- has been responsible for deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children and infants.
* Writing by Sibel Morrow and Zehra Nur Duz