At least 15 people were reportedly killed as of Thursday, October 10, since the beginning of Turkey's military operation in northeastern Syria on Wednesday, October 9. The Turkish offensive, which includes artillery fire, airstrikes, and ground attacks, started in the border towns of Ras al-Ain and Tell Abiad, forcing thousands to flee the targeted areas. The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) claimed that they have managed to contain Turkey's advances on several fronts, although the claims could not be immediately verified.
The offensive comes days after US President Donald Trump announced a US military pullback in the region. The UN Security Council has called for a closed-door meeting on Thursday to discuss the situation after several countries expressed concerns.
A heightened security presence is expected in northeastern Syria over the coming days and weeks. Violent clashes between opposing security forces cannot be ruled out.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced on October 5, that Turkey will launch a military operation in northeastern Syria in an attempt to expel Syrian Kurdish (People's Protection Units; YPG) forces from the Turkish border. Erdoğan stated that the air and ground operations will extend 30 km (19 mi) into Syria's northeastern border. Turkey considers the YPG to be a terrorist organization linked to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) group in Turkey.
Due to extremely poor security conditions, Western governments generally advise against all travel to Syria, with some banning travel to the country. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to any travel to Syria.
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