Turkish tanks cross into Syria’s FSA-held al Ra’i from Kilis

Turkish tanks cross into Syria’s FSA-held al Ra’i from Kilis
Turkish tanks crossed Saturday into the northern Syrian town of al Ra’i from southeastern Kilis province, while Turkish howitzers pounding ISIS’ positions during their passage.

Around 20 tanks, five armored personnel carriers, trucks and other armored vehicles crossed into Syrian territory controlled by the Free Syrian Army (FSA) from Elbeyli district.

The Turkish army aims in this operation at linking al-Ra’i to Jarablus, as the remaining distance between them is only 22 km, Orient News correspondent Ibrahim al-Kateeb said and added that opposition fighters took control of Atheria, Qandora, Arab al-Ezza, al-Fursan, Lelwa and the Farms of Kenno villages in the west of Jarablus.  

Turkey launched Operation Euphrates Shield on Aug. 24 in cooperation with U.S.-led anti-ISIS coalition to clear terrorist groups from Turkey’s borders. So far, the Turkey-backed FSA units captured the town of Jarablus and more than 32 villages located west of the Euphrates River.

Al Rai, also known as Cobanbey in Turkish with a train station on former Baghdad railway located in Turkish territory, was heavily contested between FSA and ISIS since March, and the town changed hands couple of times before finally controlled by the FSA on Aug. 28 with Turkish ground and Coalition’s air support.

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