ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Turkey intensified its attacks against Kurdish forces in northeastern Syria on Saturday, bombing the areas of Gire Spi and Serekaniye.
Turkish warplanes resumed air raids against the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) at approximately 8 a.m. local time. The Turkish offensive is now in its fourth day.
A source in the area told Kurdistan 24 that there was an exchange of fire from both sides on the ground in the surrounding areas of Serekaniye. There are no reports of casualties yet.
The source also said Turkey had sent more reinforcements to the area with as many as 10 tanks in the Gire Spi and Serekaniye region.
Turkish warplanes and artillery began shelling Syria’s predominantly Kurdish northeastern town of Serekaniye on Wednesday in an offensive Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called “Operation Peace Spring.”
Related Article: Turkish bombardment on northern Syria increases, death toll mounts
So far, about 70,000 people have been displaced from the area due to the bombardment, according to local and international organizations.
Reports of casualties from both Turkish and Kurdish sides are still contradicted.
Amid mounting bipartisan criticism of the limited US response to Turkey’s cross-border attack into northeast Syria, the United States signaled a major shift in policy on Friday.
At the Pentagon, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Mark Milley, strongly and publicly expressed their opposition to the assault, while affirming that the US would not abandon its Kurdish allies.
Subsequently, the Treasury Department announced that President Donald Trump would be signing a new executive order “to dissuade Turkey from any further offensive military action in northeast Syria.”
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told reporters the order involved “very significant new sanctions authorities that can be targeted at any person associated with the government of Turkey.”
(Additional reporting by Hassan Kosan, Redwan Bezar, and Veril Erishmish)