The Russian presence in the Kurdish Syrian enclave of Afrin near the Turkish border “ ... comes in agreement between [the YPG Syrian Kurdish Party] and the Russian forces operating in Syria, in the framework of cooperation against terrorism," YPG spokesman Redur Xelil announced Monday. "It is the first [agreement] of its kind," he added. "It provides for Russia to set up a military base and train Kurdish fighters,” he said.

Russian troops have already arrived at the Afrin village of Kafr Jina with troop carriers and armored vehicles. DEBKAfile adds: The Russian move, which is sure to anger Turkey, parallel’s the US armored convoy’s move into the disputed northern town of Manbij earlier this month, challenging both Russian and Turkish bids for the town. American and Russian forces now maintain a presence in two Syrian Kurdish enclaves adjoining the Turkish border.

Moscow denied sending troops into Afrin. However social media are running video representations of the event.