Middle East

Thousands flee Afrin attack, blocked by government forces: Syrian Observatory

Thousands of people are fleeing fighting and Turkish shelling and bombardment of the Kurdish Afrin region in northwestern Syria, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Tuesday.

The Britain-based war monitor, citing unidentified sources, said Syrian government forces were preventing people fleeing Afrin from crossing government-held checkpoints into Kurdish-held districts of Aleppo city.

Syrian government officials could not immediately be reached for comment.

The city of Afrin, located in a Kurdish-controlled area of northwestern Syria, is around 50 km (30 miles) from Aleppo city, a mostly government-held city where Kurdish militia control the Sheikh Maqsoud district.

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