Turkish tanks massed on the southern bordering town of Karkamis on Wednesday morning after artillery barrages and airstrikes targeted the Islamic State-held town of Jarablus. An operation was kicked off to push ISIS away from the frontier. Although tanks moved very close to the border, they had reportedly not crossed into Syrian territory.
Update: Turkish tanks have now crossed into Syrian territory.
In the first such assaults since a November, when the crisis with Russia sparked, Turkish F-16 jets dropped bombs on ISIS targets in Jarablus as well.
Security sources quoted by Turkish television said a small contingent of special forces traveled a few kilometers into Syria to secure the area before a possible operation.
The movements have come at a critical juncture for Turkey in Syria’s five-and-a-half-year war, with signs growing it is on the verge of a landmark policy shift.
Turkey has been keen on grabbing Jarablus from ISIS before Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces attempt any advance towards the town.