The following is an excerpt from BBC.com | March 18. 2018 |
Turkish-backed forces have taken full control of the centre of the Syrian-Kurdish city of Afrin.
Fighters waved flags and tore down the statue of a legendary Kurdish figure after claiming the city centre on Sunday.
The two-month Turkish-led operation aimed to rid the border region of a Kurdish militia that Turkey considers a terrorist group.
Activists say 280 civilians have died, although this is denied by Ankara.
Earlier, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that "units of the Free Syrian Army... took control of the centre of Afrin this morning".
Operations continued on Sunday to clear mines and remaining Kurdish resistance elsewhere in Afrin.
"Most of the terrorists have already fled with tails between their legs," the Turkish president said.
"In the centre of Afrin, symbols of trust and stability are waving instead of rags of terrorists."
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