SYRIA – HUNDRES of foreigners affiliated with the Islamic State group (ISIS) have escaped from a camp in northern Syria.
This is after a Turkish offensive, Kurdish officials say.
The BBC is reporting that detainees attacked gates at the Ain Issa displacement camp as fighting raged nearby.
Last week, Turkey launched and assault aimed at driving Kurdish-led forces from the region.
The United Nations (UN) estimates that 130,000 people have fled their homes, and the figure may rise.
Turkey accuses the Kurds of being terrorists and says it wants to force them away from a “safe zone” reaching some 30km into Syria, the BBC is reporting.
It also plans to resettle more than three million Syrian refugees currently in Turkey – many of whom are not Kurds – inside the zone, which critics say could lead to ethnic cleansing of the local Kurdish population there.
According to the BBC, US President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw US troops from the area effectively triggered the Turkish incursion against the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) – the main Western allies in the fight against IS.
US Defence Secretary Mark Esper told CBS News on Sunday that the US was now preparing to evacuate about 1,000 troops who remained in northern Syria.