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Turkish forces and Free Syrian Army group ‘capture’ Afrin city

18 March 2018, 5:50:00

Turkish forces and the Free Syrian Army (FSA) opposition group have captured the city centre of Afrin in Syria, which was previously controlled by Kurdish fighters, Turkish military forces and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said.

"The Turkish armed forces and Free Syrian Army have taken the control of Afrin's city centre," the Turkish military said in a tweet on Sunday, adding that experts were searching for landmines and other sorts of explosive traps in the area.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also announced that Turkey-backed forces took complete control of the city centre at 8:30am local time (05:00 GMT).

The armed forces shared a video in a separate tweet allegedly showing the Turkish flag hoisted in the city centre of Afrin.

Other videos and photos shared by the Turkish-backed FSA fighters on social media showed them in residential streets, making victory signs and waving flags. Al Jazeera cannot independently confirm their authenticity.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a UK-based war monitor, previously said that at least 150,000 civilians fled the city since last Wednesday.

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