Turkish military ‘neutralises’ 20 IS militants

Ankara, Jan 30 (IANS/AKI) Twenty Islamic State fighters were “neutralised” in northern Syria over the past 24 hours as part of Turkish-backed operation against the jihadist group, the state-run Anadolu news agency said quoting the military.

Turkey’s military did not specify if the IS militants had been killed, captured, or wounded, Anadolu reported.

Turkish armed forces also hit 23 IS targets in northern Syria, according to a statement from its general staff.

Turkish jets destroyed two gun positions, 20 buildings, and 76 handmade explosives, Anadolu said.

Turkey launched its “Euphrates Shield” operation in late August last year to sweep the Sunni hardliners and Kurdish fighters from its Syrian border using Free Syrian Army rebel fighters and Turkish artillery backed by Turkish jets and in since early January, Russian warplanes.

Turkish security forces have defused nearly 3,500 handmade explosives and over 55 mines under controlled conditions since the operation started, Anadolu said.

More than 1,300 IS militants have been killed since the operation began, the Turkish armed forces general staff stated on January 6.

–IANS/AKI

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