YPG/PKK freed 800 ISIL prisoners in Syria: Turkish Defense Ministry
"Turkey is the only NATO and International Coalition Against DAESH member to fight hand to hand and neutralize over 4000 members of DAESH in Iraq and Syria," the ministry said in a tweet, using the Arabic acronym for ISIL.
“But YPG/PKK, on the other hand, has just released over 800 DAESH prisoners of war in Tal Abyad,” it added.
Since 2016, Turkey has carried out three major military operations in northern Syria -- Euphrates Shield, Olive Branch and Peace Spring -- with the aim of purging the region of terrorist groups.
Turkey on Oct. 9 launched Operation Peace Spring to eliminate YPG/PKK terrorists from northern Syria east of the Euphrates River in order to secure Turkey’s borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees and ensure Syria’s territorial integrity.
Ankara wants YPG/PKK terrorists to withdraw from the region so a safe zone can be created to pave the way for the safe return of some two million refugees.
On Oct. 22, Ankara and Moscow reached a deal under which YPG/PKK terrorists would pull back 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) south of Turkey’s border with Syria, and security forces from Turkey and Russia would mount joint patrols there.
The U.S.-backed SDF, a group dominated by the YPG, has been controlling some 28 percent of the Syrian territories, including the most of the 911-kilometer-long Syria-Turkey border.
Turkey deems the YPG the Syrian offshoot of the illegal PKK, which is listed as a terrorist organization also by the United States and the EU.