Syrian rebels backed by Turkey ousted Islamic State (Isis) militants from the Turkish-Syrian border on Sunday, 4 September, and gained control of the 91km (55 miles) corridor, Turkey's Prime Minister Binali Yildrim said.

Yildrim spoke from the southeastern city of Diyarbakir on Sunday and said that Turkish troops and Free Syrian Army (FSA) rebels had cleaned the area of terrorists between northern Syrian towns of Azaz and Jarablus. "Our 91km border has been completely secured. All terrorist organisations have been repulsed and they have gone," Al Jazeera quoted him as saying.

Turkey's Anadolu News agency previously said this development had "removed terror organisation Daesh's physical contact with the Turkish border in northern Syria".

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights on Sunday said that IS (Daesh) militants "had lost its contact with the outside world after losing the remaining border villages between the Sajur River... and Al-Rai. Rebels and Islamist factions backed by Turkish tanks and warplanes" had captured many villages "after IS withdrew from them, ending IS's presence... on the border".

This advance comes a day after rebels captured several villages in the area, without any resistance from the IS fighters.

Ahmed Othman, a commander from the pro-Turkey rebel group Sultan Murad, said: "There are no clashes, ISIL fighters flee as soon as they see us advancing, especially because we are supported by Turkish air power."

This advance will cut of IS supply lines that it used to import weapons and fighters. Turkey mounted its first attack in northern Syria last week, more than five years after the civil war began in 2011. Its attack aimed to clear the border of IS extremists and Syrian Kurds (YPG). The country considers YPG an extension of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), an insurgent group that it has been battling with for almost three decades. However, the YPG is considered to be an effective ally by the US, in the fight against IS.

In a separate development, Syrian military forces loyal to Bashar al-Assad recaptured parts of Aleppo they lost to rebels, the BBC reported. According to reports, government forces had captured two military academy sites and cut off a supply line that the rebels had recently established.

Turkey YPG
A Turkish soldier on an armoured personnel carrier waves as he drives along with others from the border back to their base in Karkamis on the Turkish-Syrian border in the southeastern Gaziantep province, Turkey, 27 August 2016 - representational image REUTERS/Umit Bektas