Turkish Shelling, US Strikes Kill 45 ISIS in Northern Syria

Turkey Vows to 'Clean Up' Syrian Side of Border

by Jason Ditz, May 15, 2016

A new statement from Turkish state media reported that a series of Turkish artillery strikes and US airstrikes against targets in northern Aleppo Province has killed at least 45 ISIS, destroying five “defensive positions” and a mortar.

Turkey has been attacking sites in the area off and on in recent weeks, after some cross-border rocket fire landing in the Turkish city of Kilis, where a large number of refugees have been housed. Turkish officials vow to “clean up” Syria’s side of the border.

Turkey has struggled with the large ISIS presence along their border, having spent a long time allowing ISIS nad other Islamist groups to use their territory to smuggle weapons and fighters into Syria, and largely sitting on a promise to target ISIS last year, shifting their focus instead to attacking the Kurds.

Indeed, the main efforts to push ISIS out of this area of Aleppo Province have been the Kurdish YPG, though their offensives largely stalled in the face of Turkish threats to intervene to keep them from crossing the Euphrates into ISIS territory around Jarabulus.

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