Turkey's 'impulsive' invasion of Syria will destabilize region, says United States official

Iranian armed forces members march during the ceremony of the National Army Day parade in Tehran Ir

US will impose sanctions on Turkey if it crosses its line

President Donald Trump, whose order to pull back U.S. troops from the border this week effectively triggered the intervention, said Washington would now seek to broker a truce.

How is the offensive affecting people?

Another group of 14 humanitarian organisations, including the Mercy Corps, warned the figure could be 450,000.

Ms Buswell said IRC teams remained on the ground.

Darbasiya, some 60km to the east, was also reported to be largely deserted following the exodus. There is no safe place for anybody.

One of the Kurds' last hopes is that the prospect of IS prisoners breaking out and regrouping with increasingly active sleeper cells will spur the world into action.

Fighting in the struggling northeast could "revive" prospects for IS and "cause the release" of some 12,000 hardline militants who are detained by Kurdish forces at al-Hol and other camps in Syria's northeast, said Doz.

At the border you can see columns of smoke rising from the Syrian towns being shelled by the Turkish military.

"They are fighting for their land".

CNN is reporting that shells landed within "several hundred" meters of an American position.

Turkish and allied forces faced stiff Kurdish resistance on Friday as they battled to seize key Syrian border towns, on the third day of a broad offensive that has sparked a civilian exodus.

"Nobody green-lighted this operation by Turkey, just the opposite".

Eric Schwartz, president of Refugees International, an aid group, blasted Trump's policy shift and rounded on Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's "shockingly irresponsible" assault, which "will put lives at grave risk". Now that the offensive has started, Turkey is unlikely to back down.

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It's an often confused picture, with differing versions.

Turkey said it captured more Kurdish-held villages in the border region, while a camp for displaced residents about 12 kilometers (7 miles) from the frontier was evacuated after artillery shells landed nearby amid intense clashes.

According to the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), an umbrella organization largely composed of YPG and YPJ units, the attacks have already cost the lives of eight civilians, including an infant and a ten-year-old boy.

A war monitor gave a death toll approaching 100 from the first days of the assault, including 17 civilians as well as dozens of Kurdish fighters and Turkish-backed Syrian rebels.

Mourners in Akcakale carried the coffin of the slain boy, Mohammed Omar Saar, as many shouted, "Damn the PKK!" referring to the Kurdish insurgent group in Turkey linked to Syrian Kurdish fighters.

What has the reaction been?

"There is a significant concern in worldwide markets about the risk of sanctions to Turkey", said an analyst for an global bank, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres expressed his "deep concern" at the rising violence.

Trump said in a Twitter post on Thursday: "We have one of three choices: Send in thousands of troops and win Militarily, hit Turkey very hard Financially and with Sanctions, or mediate a deal between Turkey and the Kurds!". I am watching closely.

Esper called on the Turks to halt their offensive, but he told reporters that he has no indication they will.

European diplomats in Brussels have responded cautiously to the idea of sanctions, even though Turkey's actions have been met with near-unanimous criticism.

In a speech on Thursday, Erdogan called on the European Union to "pull itself together" and threatened that if the bloc labeled the operation an occupation he would "open the gates and send 3.6 million refugees" to Europe.

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