Turkey has begun bombing the Kurdish YPG (anti-ISIS militia) in Syria – see below for more. Meanwhile the Syrian army, together with support from Russia, has been bombarding the towns of Nubul and Al Zahraa (60,000 people) held by the Free Syrian Army and other anti-Assad forces; supplies from Turkey to those towns were also cut. The people in these towns were only able to survive a three and a half year siege because they were supplied with essentials by Kurds from the Afrin canton (part of Rojava). Thousands of refugees from the towns are now making their way to Afrin, as well as to the Turkish border, to escape the Syrian State offensive and Russian bombing. The Kurds in Afrin are welcoming the refugees and are calling on international efforts to bring in more supplies to help. Meanwhile Turkey has closed its border, even though in excess of 20,000 refugees (some reports say 50,000) have amassed there over the last 24 hours.
YPG (People’s Defense Units) Press Office has released a statement reporting ongoing attacks by the Turkish military against YPG security positions near the Kobanê region border. The statement reported on how Turkish troops deployed in the border town of Akçakale targeted the northern side of Girê Spî wheat silos and western side of Girê Spî at 18:15 with heavy weaponry. The aggression continued till late last night. At the same time ISIS gangs conducted an attack south of the town of Ayn îsa and the village of Shergirat was also bombed.
Meanwhile, the General Command of the YPG, the Kurdish military wing of the PYD (Democratic Union Party), has established a special operations room in Afrin “to receive the displaced [fleeing Aleppo] and give them aid”. Kurdish authorities and volunteers are also providing transportation, blankets and medication to those who arrive. Nestled in the northwest corner of Aleppo province, Afrin is the westernmost of the four cantons making up Rojava, a swathe of Kurdish territories in northern Syria held and primarily administrated by the PYD.
In the meantime the Kurds are taking advantage of the Syrian State offensive to seize back Kurdish villages held by pro-ISIS rebels to the north of Aleppo. In the coming hours it may become more clear if (as seems to be the case) the Syrian /Russian offensive will spare the Kurdish enclave, where a non-statist, non religious, non -sexist form of municipal anarchism is being tried out, as in the other parts of Rojava.