300 Turkish commandos join Operation Euphrates Shield

DENIZLI, Turkey: A total of 300 Turkish commandos will join Turkey's Operation Euphrates Shield, according to a military source.

The special troops of 11th Command Brigade in western Denizli province departed from Cardak Military Airport, said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on talking to media.

The special operation team, or Blue Berets, were airlifted to the Syrian border, said the source, without giving further details.

Operation Euphrates Shield, launched in late August by Turkey, aims at improving security, supporting coalition forces and eliminating the terror threat along Turkey's border using Free Syrian Army fighters backed by Turkish armor, artillery, and jets.

Over 215 residential areas, including more than 1,800 square kilometers (694 square miles) of land in northern Syria have been cleared of Daesh terrorists as part of the operation so far.

Syria has been locked in a devastating civil war since early 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests -- which had erupted as part of the "Arab Spring" uprisings -- with unexpected ferocity.

Since then, hundreds of thousands of people are believed to have been killed and millions more displaced by the conflict.

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Source: Anadolu Agency