Eight civilians killed in YPG attack from Syria

Shelling near Akcakale Sanliurfa inside Syria taken from the Turkish side of the border on Thursday morning

Shelling near Akcakale Sanliurfa inside Syria taken from the Turkish side of the border on Thursday morning

"It is creating a humanitarian risk for millions of people".

The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) are holding thousands of Islamic State prisoners across the region and have said they can not guarantee their continued detention while they confront Turkey's incursion.

On Friday, Turkey's Defense Ministry said that more than 300 Kurdish fighters had been killed in the invasion.

According to the Defence Ministry, the number of neutralised Syrian militia fighters has reached 342. Those figures could not be independently verified.

The IRC's Misty Buswell said: "If the offensive continues it's possible a total of 300,000 people could be displaced to already overstretched camps and towns still recovering from the fight against IS".

The SDF said Turkish airstrikes and shelling have killed nine civilians.

It views Syrian Kurdish fighters as terrorists due to their links to Turkey's Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, which has waged a decade-long battle in southeastern Turkey for more autonomy. The PKK has also been designated as a terrorist group by the European Union, the US and other countries. Both sides report civilian deaths and injuries as mortars are lobbed over the border into Turkey.

The SDF have been key allies of the United States in the battle against the Islamic State (IS) group.

"I'm not sure whether the Turkish army will be able to take this under control - and how soon", he said.

Also on Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said he was anxious that as Turkish forces attack Kurdish troops, IS militants there would be able to "simply run away".

Turkey's campaign - in which a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member rained down bombs on an area where hundreds of USA troops had been stationed - drew immediate criticism and calls for restraint from Europe.

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Separately, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg urged Ankara to exercise restraint in its incursion though he acknowledged what he said was Turkey's legitimate security concern about the Syrian Kurdish fighters.

Stoltenberg spoke at a news conference in Istanbul with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.

Turkey's Anadolu news agency said late on Thursday that 228 Kurdish militants had been "neutralised" since the start of the operation.

President Donald Trump, whose order to pull back USA troops from the border this week effectively triggered the invasion, said Washington would now seek to broker a truce. "The goal of the operation is to remove terrorists from the area", he said.

"Turkey is now responsible for ensuring that all ISIS fighters in detention in prison, remain in prison and that ISIS does not reconstitute itself in any way, shape, or form", Craft said, referring to IS.

European diplomats in Brussels have responded cautiously to the idea of sanctions on Ankara though the invasion - which began Wednesday and was dubbed by Turkey "Operation Peace Spring" - has met with unanimous criticism.

He has said he wants to settle Syrian Arab refugees along the border to create a buffer zone, in what critics say would be an act of ethnic cleansing.

Pro-Turkish Syrian fighters cross the border into Syria as they take part in an offensive against Kurdish-controlled areas in northeastern Syria launched by the Turkish military, on October 11, 2019.

In response to the Turkish bombardment, a barrage of shells from the Syrian side rained down on the Turkish border town of Akcakale, where the streets were practically empty.

The Mabroka camp, 12km (7 miles) south of the border, was hit by shelling "which posed a direct threat to the lives of more than 7,000 displaced people", according to the statement.

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