Latest: Kurdish Red Crescent says at least 348 civilians killed in Afrin
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – Over 300 civilians have been killed in Turkey’s ongoing military operation against the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) in the Syrian Kurdistan (Rojava) city of Afrin, an official from the Kurdish Red Crescent said on Tuesday.
According to an official from the Kurdish Red Crescent, a non-profit organization closely monitoring the conflict in Afrin, the Turkish army’s shelling and bombardment have killed at least 348 civilians, including 25 children and 17 women.
The official added that hundreds more had been wounded in Ankara’s military incursion, which includes 57 children and 48 women.
The Kurdish Red Crescent has been heavily involved in providing humanitarian aid to the victims of the Afrin assault.
Earlier this month, the organization set up tents in Rojava’s Kobani where they began collecting all forms of donations and aid, including humanitarian and financial.
“These people have suffered immensely. They’ve lost their homes, their families,” a Kurdish Red Crescent employee told Kurdistan 24, adding the non-profit organization hopes “to make an impact.”
On Jan. 20, the Turkish military launched an offensive in Afrin on the grounds it is securing its border from YPG fighters which it alleges are tied to the banned Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
Turkey continues to target areas in the Afrin region despite a call from the United Nations Security Council for a 30-day ceasefire across Syria.
Civilians have borne the brunt of Ankara’s military campaign, according to Kurdistan 24 correspondent Akram Salih who is covering developments in the besieged Kurdish region.
He says thousands of people, including babies and young children, are trapped as routes are blocked, and bombing continues.