Syrian Turkish-backed forces went on the rampage in Afrin yesterday, pillaging shops and homes after taking control of the northern city, AFP correspondents and a monitor said. Meanwhile, Syrian forces have taken more than 80 percent of Eastern Ghouta, and a spokesperson from a main rebel faction told The Daily Star they were in "serious" negotiations with the United Nations about a cease-fire agreement.
A spokesman for the rebel fighters said they entered Afrin before dawn from three fronts, meeting no resistance.
Turkey's President said allied Syrian forces had taken "total" control of the town, which was previously controlled by the Kurdish militia known as the People's Defence Units or YPG.
"Most of the terrorists have already fled with tails between their legs", Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said during a ceremony marking the 103rd anniversary of World War I's Battle of Gallipoli, a Turkish victory laden with symbolic and political weight.
They called on the United Nations, European powers, Muslim countries and members of the USA -led military coalition against Islamic State to "take steps to immediately avert the tragedy in Afrin and get concrete results, including withdrawal of all armed forces who entered Afrin".
Erdogan has repeatedly said that Afrin should be cleared of "terrorists", and demanded the deployment of Turkish troops there during a speech back in November 2016.
"This is a gift for those who were martyred on March 18", said a Turkish soldier as he waved the national flag in the video.
A WhatsApp group run by the Kurdish-dominated Syrian Democratic Forces called the act a "blatant violation of Kurdish people's culture and history".
Also on Sunday, the Turkish General Staff said in a statement that 3,603 terrorists were "neutralized" in Afrin while 46 soldiers were killed and another 225 injured.
More than 150,000 people fled Afrin in recent days, the Syrian Observatory said, as Turkey pressed on with its campaign despite a U.N. Security Council call for a 30-day ceasefire across Syria.
Turkey's army likewise said in a statement that the town is now under the "complete control" of it and its allies.
Other footage showed Syrian fighters shooting in the air in celebration while shouting "Allahu akbar", Arabic for "God is [the] greatest".