Turkey shells ISIS positions in Syria: report
Turkish armed forces shelled ISIS positions in Syria in coordination with the US-led international anti-militant coalition, local media reported on Monday.
Turkish artillery fired 50 to 60 shells from howitzers positioned in its southern Kilis region against ISIS targets in the north of Syria’s Aleppo province, the private Dogan news agency reported.
A fragile ceasefire has taken effect in Syria, but militants are excluded from it.
It was the first attack in several weeks since Turkey, a member of the international coalition against ISIS, stuck militant positions in Syria.
Turkish artillery have fired on ISIS targets in Syria and in Iraq after a deadly suicide attack in Istanbul’s tourist hub of Sultanahmet in January.
The ceasefire deal in Syria, brokered by Russia and the United States, has been in place since Friday midnight. UN chief Ban Ki-moon said there been some incidents but the ceasefire was generally holding.
The deal does not apply to territory held by ISIS and Al-Qaeda affiliate Al-Nusra Front.
Turkish artillery has fired Kurdish militia forces this month, saying it was responding to incoming fire.
Ankara said the Syria truce should have excluded the People’s Protection Units (YPG) militia, which it considers to be a terror group linked to its own Kurdish militants.
However the United States works closely with the YPG as the best fighting force on the ground in northern Syria the battle against ISIS.
The issue has caused major tensions between the two NATO allies, with Washington wanting Ankara to focus on the fight against ISIS rather than the Kurdish fighters.