Turkey targets Syria’s Aleppo countryside amid devastating earthquake

ALEPPO, Syria (North Press) – On Tuesday, Turkish forces shelled vicinity of the town of Tel Rifaat in Aleppo northern countryside though a devastating earthquake struck each of Turkey and Syria on Monday at dawn.

A local source told North Press the Turkish forces targeted Tel Rifaat with several shells.

The shelling caused damages to residential houses, according to the source.

The town of Tel Rifaat, 35 km north of Aleppo city, has been a shelter for Afrin displaced people since 2018 following the Turkish invasion of Afrin and its countryside which resulted in the displacement of about 300.000 of the original inhabitants.

There are 1.662 displaced families from Afrin and 35 displaced families from Idlib live in Tel Rifaat, according to statistics carried out by Autonomous Administration of Afrin, which is currently operating in the northern countryside of Aleppo. 

There are also 630 families that include about 3.000 people of original residents in the town, according to the same source.

The shelling took place as Turkey and Syria are incurring impacts of the devastating earthquake that killed and wounded thousands people.

On Monday at 4:17 am, Syria witnessed an earthquake which had its epicenter near the Turkish city of Gaziantep.

The death toll of the devastating earthquakes in Syria has reached 1.805 and 3.955 were injured, according to North Press’ Monitoring and Documentation Department.

In Turkey, the deaths have mounted to 3.381 and injuries to 20.426, according the Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD).

Hundreds are believed to still be trapped under the rubble of thousands of the collapsed buildings in both countries.

Reporting by Dilsoz Youssef