A Free Syrian Army (FSA) commander Mustafa Sejari defined capturing the areas East of Euphrates currently held by US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) as the top priority for the armed opposition factions.

Over the past few years, Sejari has acted as a representative of Turkey-backed Liwa al Mutasem group that operates in Northern Aleppo.

According to Sejari, after the Idlib agreement the FSA should concentrate its efforts on “protecting” northeast Syria. However, he added that the FSA “extends a hand” to the Kurds.

Yesterday, the Turkish army began shelling the cities of Kobane and Tel Abyag located near Syria-Turkey border. The attack was preceded by statement made by Turkish President Recep Erdogan, who announced Turkey’s intention to conduct a large-scale operation against “terror groups” east of Euphrates river.

The shelling targeted positions of the US-backed SDF that is considered an affiliate of Kurdistan Workers’ Party by the Turkish authorities.

The SDF condemned the attack and accused Turkey of hindering the operation against ISIS terrorists in eastern Deir Ezzor. In a statement released by the SDF the group announced that the offensive has been halted until Turkeys stop its attacks.

The US-led International Coalition claimed that it is “aware of the situation” and has been in contact with both Turkey and the SDF to de-escalate.

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