Mortars from Manbij injure 4 Turkish soldiers in al-Bab – reports

Turkish soldiers patrol near the border with Syria, (AP Photo)

Four Turkish soldiers in al-Bab have been wounded in a mortar attack by the People’s Protection Units (YPG) from the town of Manbij, according to reports in the Turkish media today.

The injured soldiers, who are in northern Syria supporting the Free Syrian Army factions as part of the Euphrates Shield operation, were taken to the Turkish border where they were flown to hospitals for treatment in Turkey.

Syrian-Kurdish news agency ANHA also reported that severe clashes were ongoing to the west of Manbij between the Turkish army and its FSA affiliates and fighters from the Manbij Military Council.

Turkish media also reported that Turkey’s armed forces was shelling ‘YPG positions in Manbij’.

Turkey has maintained that Kurdish fighters from the YPG are positioned in Manbij and that it will target the city as long as they are there.

The Manbij Military Council (MMC) had made a statement last week saying it had reached an agreement with Russia to transfer the defence of the line to the west of Manbij (Arima) to Syrian government forces.

This move has made it more difficult for Turkey and its allied groups to move towards Manbij, a plan that was vociferously articulated by the country’s leaders prior to its capture of al-Bab from the Islamis State.