A car bomb killed eight civilians including a woman and a child in a Turkish-held border town in northern Syria on Monday, Turkey’s defense ministry said, according to AFP.
The bomb-laden car exploded in the village of Suluk about 20 kilometers (12 miles) southeast of the Syrian border town of Tal Abyad, the ministry said.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said the attack left five dead. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the bombing.
But the Turkish defense ministry put the blame on the Kurdish forces who controlled the town before Turkish troops and their Syrian proxies seized it during a military offensive in October. Turkish forces and their proxies — former Syrian rebels hired as a ground force by Ankara — launched the deadly offensive against Kurdish forces in Syria on October 9.
The Turkish push was aimed at seizing a strip of land roughly 30 kilometers deep along the 440-kilometer border between the two countries. The offensive saw Ankara’s fighters seize a strip of land roughly 120 kilometers long and 30 kilometers deep on the Syrian side of the border.
Ankara says it wants to establish a “safe zone” there in which to resettle some of the 3.6 million Syrian refugees it hosts on its soil.