16:25 GMT +311 December 2018
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    A picture shows the Kurdish-majority town of Afrin in northern Syria, on January 23, 2018, as Turkish troops and their Syrian rebel allies pressed an assault on the border enclave

    Turkish Media Exposes Alleged Kurdish Fake News Crusade to Smear Afrin Op

    © AFP 2018 / Ahmad SHAFIA BILAL
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    Random images from websites have allegedly been used by the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) for propaganda purposes amid Turkey's ongoing Operation Olive Branch in Afrin

    The Turkish news agency Anadolu has reported that the "Afrin lies" propaganda launched by the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) is allegedly "coming to a saturation point." 

    According to Anadolu, the PKK and the PYD, blacklisted by Turkey as terrorist organizations, are allegedly continuing to use fake photographs on social networks to illustrate events which are taking place during Turkey's Operation Olive Branch in the northern Syrian district of Afrin.

    Anadolu has claimed that the past three days have seen the publication of at least ten pictures that were shot long before Operation Olive Branch began.

    Turkish forces are seen near Mount Barsaya, northeast of Afrin, Syria January 22,2018
    © REUTERS / Khalil Ashawi
    Turkish forces are seen near Mount Barsaya, northeast of Afrin, Syria January 22,2018

    As an example, the news agency referred to a photograph with a caption "kids are being targeted by the Turkish army," which Anadolu claimed was actually taken during an alleged airstrike in Syria on January 1, 2017.

    Another picture shows a mother and her two children allegedly injured during Operation Olive Branch, Anadolu said, claiming that the photo was allegedly taken on December 16, 2013.

    One more photo, titled "the YPG [the Kurdish People's Protection Units] killed many Turkish soldiers and their bodies will be delivered by a truck trailer," is in fact a photograph which Anadolu claims is "a picture from a truck company's website."

    This photo of a child on a stretcher titled "Turkey bombs the peaceful population of Afrin" actually dates back to August 29, 2017, according to Anadolu.

    WARNING: The following video is graphic and may offend sensibilities

    On January 20, the Turkish Armed Forces' General Staff announced the beginning of Operation Olive Branch against the Kurdish forces in Syria's Afrin district.

    Located in the northwest of Syria on the border with Turkey, Afrin is part of the Syrian Kurdish region commonly known as Rojava. Ankara blacklists the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) controlling Afrin as a terrorist organization linked to the PKK which is banned in Turkey.

    Ankara had more than once threatened to launch an invasion in Afrin after Washington moved to start training a border protection force which would include the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) affiliated with the YPG.

    Related:

    Casualties Mount on Day Five of Turkey's Operation Olive Branch in North Syria
    Turkey's Campaign in Syria Thwarts Attempts to Create 'Kurdish Corridor'
    Civilian Casualties in Both Syria, Turkey Amid Fifth Day of Afrin Op - Reports
    A Closer Look at Why Turkey Has a Problem With the Kurds
    Tags:
    soldiers, social networks, propaganda, population, Operation Olive Branch, Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), Turkey, Syria
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