The Kurds, who have been America's only allies in Syria fighting the Islamic State group, stopped on Thursday all their operations against the IS extremists in order to focus on fighting advancing Turkish troops, Kurdish and US officials said.
Fighting broke out in several locations along the roughly 120-kilometre wide front where operations are focused, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and a Kurdish military official said Thursday.
The land and air offensive launched by Turkey against a Kurdish-led force which spearheaded the battle against Islamic State in Syria has alarmed Western allies, who fear it could result in unsafe militants escaping to target the West.
The SDF have been key allies of the United States in the battle against the Islamic State (IS) group.
The agency said hundreds of thousands of civilians "in northern Syria are now in harm's way".
Some 100,000 people have left their homes in north-eastern Syria with a growing number taking refuge in shelters and schools following this week's Turkish military incursion in the region, the United Nations said.
During the same briefing, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley said there were no signs that Turkey was going to stop its offensive, though the Turkish ground incursion had been limited for now.
The Kurdish militia has fired dozens of mortars into border towns inside Turkey in the past two days, according to officials on the Turkish side.
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Turkish forces pushed further into the region Thursday, carrying out air and ground attacks against Syrian Kurdish fighters, reports Reuters. Kurdish forces responded with fire after Turkey began an offensive into Syria.
"I am not sure whether the Turkish army will be able to bring this under control", Putin warned.
US -allied Syrian Kurdish forces had been holding more than 10,000 IS members captured during the war against the extremists in camps and detention centers in this part of Syria.
The IRC's Misty Buswell said: "If the offensive continues it's possible a total of 300,000 people could be displaced to already overstretched camps and towns still recovering from the fight against IS".
Turkey's campaign - in which a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member rained down bombs on an area where hundreds of US troops had been stationed - drew immediate criticism and calls for restraint from Europe.
Explosions were reported in the northern Syrian border towns of Ras al Ain and Tel Abyad Friday as the Turkish military offensive continued. "Saudi Arabia, as the servant of USA, took America's advice and got stuck in a quagmire; they sought to achieve their aim in Yemen in a week but now, after seven years, Yemeni warriors have the upper hand". They said at least nine civilians were killed, including a 9-month-old boy and three girls under 15.
"As has been the case in its previous counter-terrorism operations, Turkey's response will be proportionate, measured and responsible", the letter said.
The United States proposed a statement that expressed "deep concern", called for protection of civilians, and asked Turkey to go through diplomatic channels rather than take military action, council diplomats said, speaking on condition of anonymity because consultations were private. Abandoning the Kurdish fighters who have been crucial in the fight against Daesh "is not only a bad idea" but raises many "questions both of a strategic and moral nature", Tusk said.