On August 11, 2023, three civilians, including at least one woman (who may have been under 18), were reportedly killed after being struck by a Turkish drone in the Penjwin district of Sulaymaniyah governorate. According to media coverage of this event, the victims were killed while driving towards the Iranian border.
In its coverage of this event, Roj News identified the victims, stating, “The sources stated that the names of the three citizens who lost their lives are Hassan Ahmed, his wife and daughter.” as well as identifying the victims as being from Mosul in Dohuk Governorate, including one of the victims who was an employee of Assil Company. Other local sources refer to the company as being called Asiacell and quoted the director of the Asiacell office in Dohuk, Bassam Sayed, who said that Hassan Ahmed has worked as an engineer for them since 2021.
Asiacell released a statement to Shafaq News that: “The victim’s name is (Hassan Ahmed Kashmoula), of Arab nationalism, and he is from Mosul. He came to visit his daughter at the Bashmakh border crossing, where she was a student at the Faculty of Medicine at Sanandaj University in Iran, and he intended to return her to Mosul and the other two who were inside the car.” They (his son and daughter) are called (Ziyad Mustafa Khader), and they are from the Rashidiya neighborhood in Mosul, and the girl was born in 2006, and they came for the same purpose.”
While Rudaw’s account differed in that it states Ahmed’s friend was killed, rather than wife, it provided more context, reportedly quoting Nizar Ahmed Kashmoula, the brother of one of the victims, who “indicated that they were heading to the Iranian border to receive their cousin and the son of his brother’s friend, who are studying together at the Faculty of Engineering.” Rudaw identified the victims as Hassan Ahmed, “Ziyad Mustafa, a friend of Hassan Ahmed,” and Rayan Ziyad Mustafa, a student at the Faculty of Medicine.”
Following this incident, outlets including ANF Arabic and Rudaw published images that purportedly show the damage to the car occupied by the affected civilians. In these images, the vehicle is heavily damaged and on fire, positioned on the side of a road. Rudaw also identified the vehicle as being a white Toyota Corolla.
Rudaw noted that the Turkish Anti-Terrorism Service claimed to have targeted two vehicles operated by militants affiliated with the PKK on the same day. While neither statement can be matched with certainty to this specific incident, Rudaw reports that the organization reported the day’s events in the following terms: “The Anti-Terrorism Service said: “A Turkish drone targeted a car belonging to the PKK, near the village of Kalala” in Sulaymaniyah Governorate, which resulted in “the death of a PKK intelligence official and the wounding of two others.” He added that another attack by a Turkish drone targeted “a car of PKK members near the village of Qala in the Khalkan region,” also in Sulaymaniyah, which led to the death of “a PKK member and the injury of two others.” The director of Nalbariz district in Penjween district in Sulaymaniyah governorate, Hemin Ibrahim, told Rudaw that he was confident that the bombing was carried out by a drone because of the holes left on the street.
The local time of the incident is unknown.