SDF: 412 SDF fighters killed in Turkish operations

A senior Kurdish official from northeast Syria said late Thursday that 412 fighters of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have been killed since Turkey’s launch of Operation Peace Spring.

Speaking to reporters in Washington, president of the Syrian Democratic Council’s (SDC) Executive Committee Ilham Ahmed announced “confirmed statistics” on their now 22-day-old conflict.

“More than 400,000 people have been forcibly displaced. Some of them stay at schools, while others are homeless. 18,000 of the displaced are children. Five of the medical personnel who were helping the injured were have lost their lives,” said Ahmed.

“Four journalists have been killed. More than 20 schools have been destroyed and 180 schools are out of service. 18,000 students cannot go to school now. 5240 teachers cannot go to work. All the [international] humanitarian organizations have left the arena,” she said, putting the number of SDF “martyrs” at 412.

She added that Turkey and its Syrian proxies currently hold 73 SDF hostages captured during the conflict.

The SDC is the political wing of the multi-ethnic SDF, allied with the US in the fight against Islamic State (ISIS) since it was founded in 2015.

Turkey regards the SDF a terrorist organization due to its alleged link to Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) guerrillas inside Turkey.