Tensions have been high in northeastern Syria along the battle lines separating the Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the Turkish-backed factions of the Syrian National Army in wake of an escalation of shelling by the two sides.
The tensions have mounted in the areas surrounding the town of Tal Tamr, Nahiyat Abou Rasein, Zurkan in the Hasakah province’s northern countryside, and the two n of Ain Issa in Raqqa.
A senior SDF military leader warned that the forces would repel any aggression against their lands and areas of influence.
“We are ready to face any aggression by the Turkish occupation army or its mercenaries, and we have enough strength and determination,” said Mattai Hanna, the official spokesman for the Syriac Military Council, one of the SDF formations.
“Our forces are responding to the artillery shelling as it is our legitimate right to defend our lands,” he added, noting that the Turkish attacks targeted villages and areas populated by unarmed civilians, as well as schools and power lines.
“All of this aims to create chaos and instability in the region in order to undermine the democratic project that the Autonomous Administration and its military forces seek to implement,” Hanna underlined.
A military official and residents of Tal Tamr reported that the Turkish army and loyal Syrian factions launched a violent attack on the Assyrian villages of Tal Jumaah, Tal Shanan and Tal Kaifji, northeast of Tal Tamr overnight on Sunday.
Aram Hanna, the official spokesman for the SDF, noted the silence of the international community and countries involved in Syria over these attacks, accusing Ankara of seeking to create a state of chaos and instability.
“The Turkish attacks affect our efforts in the fight against terrorism and the pursuit of active and sleeper cells that come from Turkish-controlled areas, which have become fertile ground for the export of terrorism,” he stated.