Erdogan: Turkish troops inside ISIL bastion al-Bab

Russian air strikes on Thursday killed three, wounded eleven Turkish soldiers during an operation against Islamic State in Syria.

He said there had been a communications failure, adding: "There should not have been Turkish soldiers within the limits of these coordinates".

Turkey has repeatedly said it wants to be part of the USA -led operation to retake Raqqa, but does not want the YPG, which has been backed by Washington, to be involved.

Turkey's Operation Euphrates Shield was launched on August 24, 2017 with the aim of ridding its borders of the presence of terrorist groups including Daesh and the YPG, a Syrian-offshoot of the PKK, which the USA and Ankara designate as a terrorist group.

In a news conference following his party's board meeting on the upcoming constitutional referendum, Devlet Bahceli criticized Russian Federation for the bombing of Turkish troops in the Daesh-held town of Al-Bab in northern Syria.




After years of heavy fighting, Syrian government forces drove the rebels out of eastern Aleppo in December, but the opposition still holds some areas on the city's outskirts.

He said that the countries supporting the ISIL terrorist group have failed to take any military or political measure to protect al-Bab city or block the advances of the Syrian army.

"Daesh [ISIS] militants started to withdraw from al-Bab city". Separately, a Russian airstrike killed three Turkish troops in what Russia said was an accident. Meanwhile, government forces are battling an IS offensive in Deir al-Zour and another one in the central Homs province, around the ancient town of Palmyra. It is now up to Turkey, Russia and Iran to demonstrate whether they can mediate a stable outcome for the town, or whether the front will dissolve into open warfare.

Erdogan reiterated that Turkey does not have any plans to stay in Syria after Daesh is wiped out, saying Turkey's only goal is to "clear this region of terrorism".

The head of the Russian General Staff, Valery Gerasimov, also talked on the phone with his Turkish counterpart, Hulusi Akar, expressing his condolences over the incident.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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