ISTANBUL – Turkey’s military hit targets in the northern Syrian town of Tel Rifat in response to artillery attacks that killed 14 people and wounded several others in nearby Afrin, state-run Anadolu agency said on Sunday.
Ankara blamed Saturday’s attacks, including on a hospital, on the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia. The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the U.S.-backed militia force spearheaded by the Kurdish YPG, has said it was not responsible.
Anadolu said Turkish armed forces, which have a large presence in northern Syria, struck “terrorist targets” in the town. At an earlier press conference, President Tayyip Erdogan said: “We will hold these cowards accountable for every drop of blood they spilled.”
Turkey regards the YPG as a terrorist group tied to the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) inside its own borders, and has staged incursions into Syria in support of Syrian rebels to push it from the Turkish frontier.