ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) - The water supply to the Syrian Kurdish enclave of Afrin has been cut off for a week following the change in control of the major water dam in the region, the UN office for humanitarian affairs said on Wednesday.
The conflict in the area has caused thousands of people to flee their homes within the Afrin region, and towards the Syrian government-controlled territory, the UN office for humanitarian affairs (OCHA) said.
“Water has been fully cut off because of the Turkish army’s control over it,” said Birusk Hasaka, the People's Protection Units (YPG) spokesman in Afrin. “Civilians are depending on wells to get water, and they are not enough and not good for drinking, unfortunately.”
Turkey launched its offensive against the YPG on Jan. 20, claiming that Kurdish forces, which it argues are an offshoot of the banned Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), represent a “terrorist” threat to its southern borders.
The US, who has supported the YPG in its campaign to defeat the Islamic State in Syria, does not agree with Ankara’s designation of the Kurdish forces and has called on Turkey to limit its operations.
According to human rights organizations, over 200 civilians have been killed as a result of the ongoing offensive with scores more injured.
Editing by John J. Catherine