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State TV reports Turkey launches military operation to evacuate troops guarding tomb in Syria

  • FILE - In this April 7, 2011 file photo, Turkish soldiers stand guard at the entrance of the memorial site of Suleyman Shah, grandfather of Osman I, founder of the Ottoman Empire, in Karakozak village, northeast of Aleppo, Syria. Turkey's state-run TRT television broadcaster reported early Sunday Feb. 22, 2015 that Turkey launched the operation overnight to evacuate troops guarding an Ottoman tomb in Syria, just over the border near the town of Kobani. (AP Photo/File)

    FILE - In this April 7, 2011 file photo, Turkish soldiers stand guard at the entrance of the memorial site of Suleyman Shah, grandfather of Osman I, founder of the Ottoman Empire, in Karakozak village, northeast of Aleppo, Syria. Turkey's state-run TRT television broadcaster reported early Sunday Feb. 22, 2015 that Turkey launched the operation overnight to evacuate troops guarding an Ottoman tomb in Syria, just over the border near the town of Kobani. (AP Photo/File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - The Prime Minister of Turkey, Ahmet Davutoglu, attends a joint news conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel after a meeting at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, in this, Jan. 12, 2015 file photo. Turkey's prime minister said early Sunday Feb. 22, 2015 his country has evacuated troops guarding an Ottoman tomb in Syria. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn, File)

    FILE - The Prime Minister of Turkey, Ahmet Davutoglu, attends a joint news conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel after a meeting at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, in this, Jan. 12, 2015 file photo. Turkey's prime minister said early Sunday Feb. 22, 2015 his country has evacuated troops guarding an Ottoman tomb in Syria. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • Turkish army's armored vehicles and tanks drive in Syrian town of Ayn al-Arab, also known as Kobani, as they return from the Ottoman tomb in Syria, Sunday, Feb. 22, 2015. Turkey launched an overnight military operation into neighboring Syria to evacuate troops guarding an Ottoman tomb and to move the crypt to a new location, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Sunday. Davutoglu said nearly 600 troops and 100 tanks and armored personnel carriers were involved in the operation. One group crossed into Syrian territory to reach the tomb, just over the border near the town of Kobani, while a second group took control of an area near the Turkish border where authorities plan to move the tomb.(AP Photo/Mursel Coban, Depo Photos)

    Turkish army's armored vehicles and tanks drive in Syrian town of Ayn al-Arab, also known as Kobani, as they return from the Ottoman tomb in Syria, Sunday, Feb. 22, 2015. Turkey launched an overnight military operation into neighboring Syria to evacuate troops guarding an Ottoman tomb and to move the crypt to a new location, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Sunday. Davutoglu said nearly 600 troops and 100 tanks and armored personnel carriers were involved in the operation. One group crossed into Syrian territory to reach the tomb, just over the border near the town of Kobani, while a second group took control of an area near the Turkish border where authorities plan to move the tomb.(AP Photo/Mursel Coban, Depo Photos)  (The Associated Press)

State television is reporting that Turkey has launched a military operation to evacuate troops guarding a tomb in Syria.

Turkey's state-run TRT television broadcaster reported early Sunday that Turkey launched the operation overnight to evacuate troops guarding an Ottoman tomb in Syria, just over the border near the town of Kobani.

Kobani was the focus of U.S. airstrikes as Kurdish forces battled militants of the Islamic State group, who hold about a third of Iraq and neighboring Syria in their self-declared caliphate. Turkey stayed out of the battle at the time, which saw Kurds push out the extremists.

Some 40 Turkish tombs guard the tomb of Suleyman Shah, the grandfather of the Ottoman Empire's founder. The tomb sits in Syria's embattled Aleppo province and is considered Turkish territory.