A girl carries water in a plastic can, with Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) fighters in the background, in the border town of Jarablus, Syria, August 31, 2016. REUTERS/Umit Bektas
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The silhouette of a Daesh (ISIS) fighter on a rearing horse, a black flag in his hand and a saber by his side, is among the disappearing traces of the militants' grip on this Syrian border town a week after Turkish-backed rebels swept in.Syrian rebels, mostly Arab and Turkmen, swept into Jarablus last Wednesday in an incursion backed by Turkish special forces, tanks and jets, an operation meant to drive Daesh from the town and surrounding territory and to prevent Kurdish militia fighters from seizing control in their wake.A week on, there is little sign of the Turkish military presence. Three Turkish soldiers were wounded Tuesday after their tank came under fire west of Jarablus.Just to the east, over the Euphrates, lies territory controlled by a U.S.-backed Kurdish militia also fighting the militants, but seen by Turkey as a hostile force, an extension of militants who have fought a three-decade insurgency for Kurdish autonomy in southeastern Turkey.Turkish forces have clashed with Kurdish fighters as they push deeper into Syria south of Jarablus, meaning the town and its surroundings remain on the edge of an active front line.
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