Smoke rises from the Syria's Afrin region, as it is pictured from near the Turkish town of Hassa, on the Turkish-Syrian border in Hatay province, Turkey January 20, 2018. (REUTERS/Osman Orsal)
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Turkish jets bombed the Kurdish-controlled city of Afrin in northern Syria Saturday, as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised to expand Turkey's military border operations against a Kurdish group that has been the U.S.'s key Syria ally in the war on Daesh (ISIS).Turkish leaders were infuriated by an announcement by the U.S. military six days ago that it was going to create a 30,000-strong border force with the Kurdish fighters to secure northern Syria.Speaking in the city of Kutahya in western Turkey, Erdogan announced an expansion to Turkish operations in Syria, promising to move on the Kurdish-controlled town of Manbij and its surrounding countryside after completing operations in Afrin. In 2016, Turkey trained and equipped opposition forces to drive Kurdish fighters out of parts of north Syria, driving a wedge between two enclaves along the Turkish frontier. Turkish ground forces, including tanks and artillery, crossed into Syria with the fighters to establish a zone flanked by Afrin and Manbij that now serves as hub for Turkish operations inside the war-torn country.
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