The Syrian Democratic Forces denied on Wednesday Turkish military claims that the ISIS terrorist group was present in the Afrin region in northern Syria where it has been waging a military offensive against Kurdish factions.
“The whole world knows ISIS is not present in Afrin,” Redur Xelil, a senior SDF official, told Reuters.
He said the Turkish military had greatly exaggerated SDF casualties, though he declined to say how many had been killed.
The Turkish army had announced on Tuesday that at least 260 People’s Protection Units and ISIS members had died in the offensive that it launched last week.
Xelil said that the SDF had killed dozens of Turkish soldiers and their allies in the Free Syrian Army. He declined however from giving an exact figure.
In addition, he revealed that foreign fighters, including Americans, Britons and Germans, were fighting with the Kurdish factions against the Turkish offensive.
Meanwhile, a US official expected President Donald Trump to contact his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday to express his concern about Ankara’s Afrin operation.