Turkish-backed forces have taken full control of the centre of the Syrian-Kurdish city of Afrin. Fighters waved flags and tore down the statue of a legendary Kurdish figure Kawa after claiming the city centre yesterday. The two-month Turkish-led operation aimed to rid the border region of a Kurdish militia that Turkey considers a terrorist group.
Meanwhile, Vladimir Putin will lead Russia for another six years, after securing an expected victory in Sunday’s presidential election. Mr Putin, who has ruled the country as either president or prime minister since 1999, got more than 76% of the vote, official results show. The main opposition leader, Alexei Navalny, was barred from the race.
Lastly, a mural unveiled in New York last week by anonymous British artist Banksy protests the continued imprisonment of Kurdish artist and journalist Zehra Dogan, sentenced last year in Turkey. The British artist’s 70-foot-long mural, unveiled on Thursday, represents jail cell bars which count the number of days Dogan has spent in a Turkish prison. Dogan who still has 18 months left on her sentence, is reportedly unaware of the tribute by Banksy.