Thousands of Kurdish protesters rallied in the Syrian city of Kobane on Friday to protest against the Turkish military action in northern Syria and the resulting civilian death toll.

Elderly, children and women were seen carrying signs and photographs of Kurdish soldiers injured or killed in battle, while others at the protest made speeches.

The rally, which was held on the first day of Turkey’s announced ceasefire, started in the centre of Kobane and headed to Azadi Square (Freedom Square) near the border crossing with Turkey.

Despite the ceasefire shelling and airstrikes have reportedly continued near Ras al-Ayn.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu announced on Thursday that Turkey's offensive in northern Syria would be paused for 120 hours to allow Kurdish forces to leave the area, after a round of talks between US Vice President Mike Pence and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Turkey's military offensive, dubbed 'Operation Peace Spring,' began on October 9, days after the White House announced a withdrawal of US troops from the area. Ankara says the aim of the offensive is to create a 'safe zone' cleared of Kurdish groups.

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Associated Press 11 May 2020 11:44 CEST

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