Turkish drones start operating in northern Syria, says ministry

Syrian boys play with plastic guns on the first day of the Muslim religious festival of Eid al-Adha in al-Dana in Syria's rebel-controlled Idlib region, near the border with Turkey, on August 11, 2019. (AFP)
Updated 14 August 2019

Turkish drones start operating in northern Syria, says ministry

  • Turkey and the US agreed last week to set up a joint operations center regarding the safe zone to be established in northern Syria

ISTANBUL: Turkish drones have started operating in northern Syria where Washington and Ankara have agreed to create a safe zone, Turkey’s Defense Ministry said on Wednesday.

Turkey and the US agreed last week to set up a joint operations center regarding the safe zone to be established in northern Syria. No agreement has been announced on key details such as the size of the zone and the command structure of joint patrols that would be conducted there.

FASTFACT

Turkey and the US agreed last week to set up a joint operations center regarding the safe zone to be established in northern Syria.

A six-person US delegation arrived in the southern Turkish province of Sanliurfa on Monday to work on the establishment of the operations center. The Defense Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday that work was continuing to make the joint operations center in Sanliurfa operational. Turkish drones had started carrying out work in the area where the safe zone will be created, but did not provide further information on the drones’ operations, it added.

Washington and Ankara have been at odds over plans for northeastern Syria, where US allies on the ground in the battle against Daesh militants.

 


Five civilians killed in Baghdad rocket attack

Updated 28 September 2020

Five civilians killed in Baghdad rocket attack

  • The rockets targeted the international airport but struck a residential home close by instead
  • Rocket attacks have become a frequent occurrence, often targeting the US Embassy in Baghdad and US troops present in Iraqi bases as well as Baghdad Airport

BAGHDAD: Iraqi militia groups fired two Katyusha rockets on a house in Baghdad, killing two women and three children and wounding two other children, the Iraqi military said on Monday.
The deaths were the first among Iraqi civilians in the latest outbreak of violence, during which Iran-backed Iraqi Shiite militias have been blamed for targeting US interests in the country. Police sources said Baghdad airport was the target of the attack. 
The rocket was launched from the Al-Jihad neighborhood of Baghdad.
The attacks have become a frequent occurrence, often targeting the US Embassy in Baghdad, within the heavily fortified Green Zone, and US troops present in Iraqi bases as well as Baghdad Airport. Roadside bombs have also frequently targeted convoys carrying equipment destined for US-led coalition forces.
Previous attacks have caused minor damage but rarely deaths or injuries.
The frequency of the rockets have strained Iraq-US relations, prompting the Trump administration last week to threaten to close its diplomatic mission in Baghdad if Shiite militia groups believed to be orchestrating them are not reigned in.
The disparate nature of Shiite militias following the US assassination of Iranian Gen. Qassim Soleimani and Iranian militia leader Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis has complicated Iraqi efforts to clamp down on rogue armed elements.
A government raid on the powerful Iran-backed Kataib Hezbollah, suspected of launching rocket attacks, backfired when those detained were released for want of evidence.