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Shelling in northern Syria kills 5; at least 15 wounded

August 18, 2021 GMT

BEIRUT (AP) — Turkey-backed Syrian forces and Syrian Kurdish fighters shelled one another’s positions in northern Syria on Wednesday, leaving at least five people dead and more than a dozen wounded, the Kurdish side and a war monitor reported.

The violence is the latest in northern Syria, which has seen tensions for days between the two sides there.

According to the U.S.-backed Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, Turkish troops and Syrian fighters backed by Ankara shelled the area of Abu Rassine, killing a woman and a child and wounding 15 people.

Kurdish fighters later shelled the northern town of Afrin, killing three people. That’s according to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an opposition war monitoring group. Turkish media reported that four were also wounded in Afrin.

Turkey and allied Syrian fighters took control of Afrin in 2018 in a military operation that expelled local Kurdish fighters and displaced thousands of Kurdish residents. Turkey has labelled Syrian Kurdish fighters as terrorists, arguing that they are allied with Kurdish insurgents within Turkey.