ISTANBUL – Turkey's president has announced that a Turkish military helicopter has been "downed" in northern Syria during Ankara's offensive on Syrian Kurdish militia there.
Speaking in Istanbul on Saturday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan didn't mention by name the Syrian Kurdish People's Protection Units or YPG but said those responsible will pay for it. The Turkish military has not made a statement.
A spokesman for the Kurdish militia, Mustafa Bali, confirmed his fighters downed the chopper in Raju, northwest Afrin.
Turkey launched a military offensive on Jan. 20 to uproot the YPG from Afrin. Turkey considers the group an extension of an insurgency within its own borders.
Nineteen Turkish soldiers have died since the beginning of the operation.