A general view shows the Kurdish city of Afrin, in Aleppo's countryside, March 18, 2015.
FILE - A general view shows the Kurdish city of Afrin, in Aleppo's countryside, March 18, 2015.

The Turkish Defense Ministry and rescue workers on the scene say a bomb attached to a fuel tanker truck exploded Tuesday in a market in the northern Syrian town of Afrin, killing at least 40 people. 

Syrian opposition civil defense organization, The White Helmets, released video from the scene in Afrin, which is controlled by Turkish-backed opposition fighters.  They say at least 40 others were injured. 

In the video, thick smoke could be seen engulfing several cars and businesses as fire and tanker trucks fought the blaze. 

While it was not immediately clear who was responsible for the blast, the Turkish Defense Ministry blamed the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia. Ankara considers the Kurdish fighters who were in control of Afrin to be terrorists. 

The YPG is the main force within the U.S. backed Syrian Democratic Forces. 

The blast was one of the largest to hit the area since Turkey and allied Syrian fighters took control of Afrin in 2018. That military operation that expelled local Kurdish fighters and displaced thousands of Kurdish residents. 

 

 

 

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