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    A Turkish military armored vehicle drives in the northern Syrian rebel-held town of al-Rai, Syria January 5, 2017

    Turkish Forces Kill 19 Daesh Militants Near Al-Bab in Syria - General Staff

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    Turkish forces have eliminated 19 Daesh militants over the past 24 hours as part of the Euphrates Shield operation near the town of Al Bab in northern Syria, the Turkish General Staff said Tuesday.

    ANKARA (Sputnik) — Turkish artillery and tanks also hit 340 targets, according to the statement.

    "Our air forces carried out strikes in the areas of al-Bab, Bza'a and Seflaniye, destroying 27 IS [Daesh] targets, including defense positions, shelters and terrorist headquarters. Air and land operations resulted in the elimination of 19 IS fighters, three mortar positions and four armed vehicles," the General Staff said in a statement.

    On August 24, the Turkish army launched Operation Euphrates Shield against militants of the Daesh group, which is outlawed in Russia and many other countries. Turkish forces, with assistance from Syrian opposition fighters, took over the city of Jarabulus in northern Syria and are currently conducting its offensive on al-Bab. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the aim of the operation was to clear the region of terrorists and make it a safety zone for refugees.

    The operation has been widely criticized both by the Syrian Kurds and Damascus, who have accused Ankara of violating Syria's territorial integrity.

    Daesh, a terrorist organization outlawed in many countries, including Russia, took over al-Bab in 2013 as it spread throughout Syria amid the country’s ongoing civil war.

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    Operation Euphrates Shield, Syria, Turkey, al-Bab
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