Turkish Military in Iraq & Syria

An internally displaced Kurdish family in northern Iraq, 2016 (Maranie R. Staab)

Belligerent
Turkish military
Country
Iraq
Syria
start date
end date
Airwars Grading
Belligerent Assessment

Incident Code

CS327 TS005

Incident date

October 4, 2016

Location

الثلثانة, Taltanah, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.4457989, 37.3436021 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. marker Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

Up to 19 civilians including 3 children were killed – and as many as 41 people injured – when airstrikes hit the village of Al Thaltanah. Multiple reports initially assigned blame to the Coalition or Turkish forces. However, on December 1st 2016 the Coalition conceded it had killed one civilian in the event.

The Syrian Network and Syria News Desk reported that seven civilians died, and assigned responsibility to the Coalition. Several other reports also blamed the Coalition. The Syrian Observatory reported that “warplanes” targeted the village “inhabited by Kurdish civilians,” leaving 60 civilian casualties, including 13 confirmed civilian deaths.

In a separate report, the Observatory clarified the airstrikes were carried out “likely by Turkish warplanes,” and reported that the death toll rose to 19 civilians, including 3 children, noting “the number of the dead is likely to rise.” ISIL’s news arm Al A’maq News reported that 10 civilians died and several were injured in an “American raid.”

Reflecting the confusion, al Jazeera cited the Observatory and wrote, “it was unclear whether the strike was carried out by the US-led coalition fighting ISIL, or Turkey, which is leading an operation against the group in the area with support from Syrian rebel forces.”

In its December 1st report the Coalition stated: “During a strike targeting ISIL fighters it is assessed that one civilian was inadvertently killed as a result of the blast following the strike.” This was later amended on April 30th 2017: “Oct. 4, 2016, near Talatanah, Syria: Number 5 on the Dec. 1, 2016, CJTF-OIR press release reported that one civilian was killed during a strike on ISIS fighters. That was incorrect, it was assessed that one civilian was unintentionally injured.”

Halab News identified 11 civilians, 9 of which it named, who it said were victims of “Coalition plane shelling.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

  • Unidentified from Kleisharo family Age unknown from Kafr Sgheer village killed
  • Unidentified from Kleisharo family Age unknown killed

Family members (3)

  • Mohammad Yahiya al Ibo Age unknown male killed
  • Mahmoud Yahiya al Ibo Age unknown male killed
  • Mustapha Yahyia al Ibo Age unknown male killed

Family members (2)

  • Rashid Risho Age unknown male killed
  • Ahmad Rashid Risho Age unknown male killed

Family members (3)

  • Illo al Haj Illo Age unknown male killed
  • Yahiya Yusuf Al Hajj Illo Age unknown male killed
  • Ibrahim Yahyia al Hajj Illo Age unknown male killed
  • Mohammad al Qarmatli Age unknown male killed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    11–19
  • (3 children)
  • Civilians reported injured
    41
  • Airwars grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Suspected belligerents
    US-led Coalition, Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (18) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • "Satellite images show recent attack resulted from an airstrike, UN says, as battle for Aleppo sees more children killed", November 2016. (via Al-Jazeera)
  • Location of the village where the air strike took place, November 2016. (via Eastern Manbij countryside)

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Credible
    The investigation assessed that although all feasible precautions were taken and the decision to strike complied with the law of armed conflict, unintended civilian casualties regrettably occurred.
  • Given reason for civilian harm
    Killed by strike blast
    Airwars’ assessment of belligerent’s civilian casualty statement
  • Initial Airwars grading
    Confirmed
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    1
  • Stated location
    near Taltanah, Syria
    Nearest population center

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Dec 1, 2016
  • During a strike targeting ISIL fighters it is assessed that one civilian was inadvertently killed as a result of the blast following the strike.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For October 3rd-4th 2016, the Coalition reported no strikes in the near vicinity, though others for Aleppo governorate: ”Near Manbij, one strike destroyed an ISIL machine gun. Near Mar’a, four strikes engaged three ISIL tactical units and destroyed two fighting positions and a command and control node.”

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces
  • Turkish Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    11–19
  • (3 children)
  • Civilians reported injured
    41
  • Airwars grading
    Confirmed
    A specific belligerent has accepted responsibility for civilian harm.
  • Suspected belligerents
    US-led Coalition, Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (18) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS040

Incident date

January 5, 2017

Location

الباب, Al Bab, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.371972, 37.51631 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. marker Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

City

Airwars assessment

Two civilians were reportedly killed in an alleged Turkish artillery shelling on Al Bab.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights wrote: “And two citizens, including a child, were killed in shelling by Turkish forces on areas in Al Bab city in the northeastern countryside of Aleppo.”

The ISIS propaganda outlet Al Raed La Ykazeb Ahlahu published a similar report and also said that 11 people were injured.

Jabal Aqel Al Bab reported that one person killed came from the Sukkar family, while the other one is a child from Al Mahdatha school. In addition, the source mentioned 15 wounded people.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Member of the Sukkar family Age unknown killed
  • Child from Al Mahdatha school Child killed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (1 child)
  • Civilians reported injured
    11–15
  • Airwars grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (6) [ collapse]

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces
  • Turkish Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (1 child)
  • Civilians reported injured
    11–15
  • Airwars grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (6) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS333 TS005a

Incident date

October 8, 2016

Location

دويبق, Dabiq, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.5643925, 37.2749805 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. marker Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

Twelve to 14 civilians, including up to seven children and five women, were killed in air raids on the village of Dabiq in Aleppo governorate, according to local reports. It was alleged that both the Coalition and Turkey were responsible.

The Syrian Network reported “at least 8 civilians died in International Coalition warplanes missiles fired on Al Dabiq village in Aleppo governorate.” Halab Today TV, citing activists, reported that 12 civilians had been killed and others injured “following the targeting by international coalition planes.”

Sky News Arabia also reported a figure of “at least” 10 civilians, which it said were from “the same family,” and it blamed the bombardment on the international coalition – as did Hara FM which added that 23 people were injured. It described raids in residential areas that destroyed five houses, which killed “eight civilians from one family, most of them children and two from a second family” and said eight people had been transferred to Al Bab due to injuries, most of them critical.

However, the Syrian Observatory assigned blame to Turkey and put the death toll at 9 members from the same family. It said the victims were “an elderly man, 3 citizen women and 5 children” and added that others were injured and the death toll was expected to rise as some were in a “critical situation.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

  • Mahmoud Fara Age unknown male killed
  • Mahmoud Fara's wife Age unknown female killed

Family members (6)

  • Sheikho Imam's wife Age unknown female killed
  • Sheikho Imam's wife Age unknown female killed
  • Sheikho Imam' child 1 Child killed
  • Sheikho Imam' child 2 Child killed
  • Sheikho Imam' child 3 Child killed
  • Sheikho Imam' child 4 Child killed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    9–14
  • (4–7 children4–5 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    23
  • Airwars grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected belligerents
    US-led Coalition, Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (14) [ collapse]

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For October 7th-8th 2016 the Coalition reported strikes in Aleppo governorate: “Near Mar’a, one strike damaged an ISIL VBIED facility. Near Washiyah, two strikes engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL-held building and a command and control node.”

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces
  • Turkish Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    9–14
  • (4–7 children4–5 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    23
  • Airwars grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected belligerents
    US-led Coalition, Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (14) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS045

Incident date

January 10, 2017

Location

الباب , Al Bab, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.371972, 37.51631 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. marker Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

City

Airwars assessment

Seven or eight civilians died including one child and as many as 30 more were injured in alleged Turkish air and artillery strikes on Al Bab, Syria, according to sources on the ground.

Ameer Alabaad put the death toll at six civilians with 12 more wounded – “mostly children and women” – in a “Turkish air and artillery bombardment” on Al Bab.

IS propaganda source, Al Raed La Ykazeb Ahlahu, also reported these figures and blamed Turkey. It also published graphic footage showing the aftermath of the attack.

LCCSY said that eight people had died and also pointed to Turkey.

Halab News named the victims killed by Turkish artillery in Al Bab on January 10th.

According to jabal-aqel-albab.tk, a further 30 civilians were wounded in the shelling.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Abd al Hakim Abd al Hamid al Hamdan Age unknown male named by Halab News killed
  • Yasser Zakkour al Baho Age unknown male named by Halab News killed
  • Unidentified victim Child named by Halab News killed
  • Unidentified victim Adult male named by Halab News killed
  • Abdallah Hassan Salam Al Hashem Age unknown male named by Halab News killed
  • Mohammad Ghazal Fares Age unknown male named by Halab News killed
  • The son of Mohammad al A’bo Age unknown male named by Halab News killed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    7–8
  • (1 child1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    10–30
  • Airwars grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (11) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • A’maq Agency: # breaking: 6 dead and 12 wounded, mostly children and women as a result of aerial bombardment and Turkish artillery on the city of Al Bab. (via ameer_albab)

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces
  • Turkish Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    7–8
  • (1 child1 man)
  • Civilians reported injured
    10–30
  • Airwars grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (11) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS089

Incident date

July 10, 2017

Location

تل رفعت كفر ناصح, The area between Tal Rifa’at and Kafr Nasseh, northern Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.4478682, 37.1035767 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. marker Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

Local media reported the death of between two and four civilians and injury of as many as dozens more in an alleged Turkish artillery bombardment in area between Tal Rifa’at and Kafr Nasseh, Syria.

According to Rumaf, “four people from one family died and dozens more were injured in the area between Tel Rifaat and Kafr Naaseh due to the violent aggression by the Turkish occupation based in the city of Izzaz and Mara. The shelling has not stopped since yesterday in the middle of the night until now [July 10th].”

A further report by Rumaf included the image of a boy whose leg had been amputated. The source said: “The child (Omar Abdo Sakran) lost his leg as a result of the indiscriminate bombardment byTurkey. At the same time, he lost his father Abdo Sakran and other members of his family were injured. What is very sad is that the child Omar saw his father’s body without his head and didn’t recognise him as his father.”

According to Rok Online, “two civilians were killed and five others wounded on Monday [July 10th] in an artillery bombardment by the Turkish army and the factions of the Euphrates Shield on the Al-Shahba area in the northern countryside of Aleppo. Artillery shelling occurred in Tal Refa’at, Sheikh Issa, Kafr al-Nasab and Harbal in the north of Aleppo. The correspondent added that the injured civilians were taken to the hospital Afrin in the city of Afrin, which coincided with an escalation in shelling of the areas mentioned.”

Sputnik reported that Turkey were using “heavy artillery and rocket-propelled grenades…causing the destruction of a large number of residential buildings and the burning of agricultural crops and land in Tal Refa’at, Shaikh Issa, Harbel, and al shahba dam.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Abdo Sukran Ibn Omar Adult male killed
  • Mohammed Issa Ibn Dibu Adult male killed
  • Abu Ghraib Al Sukran Age unknown male injured
  • Ahmed Al-Sukran Age unknown male injured
  • Son of Abdo al-Sukran 10 years old male injured
  • Ali Badran Age unknown male injured

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    2–4
  • (2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    4–24
  • Airwars grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (8) [ collapse]

  • The child (Omar Abdo Sakran) lost his leg in an alleged Turkish shelling on he area between Tel Rifaat and Kafr Naaseh, July 10th 2017. (via Rumaf)
  • The exact moment an allged Turkish airstrike targeted the area between Tal Rifa’at and Kafr Nasseh, 10th July 2017. (via RuMaf facebook)
  • The exact moment an allged Turkish airstrike targeted the area between Tal Rifa’at and Kafr Nasseh, 10th July 2017. (via RuMaf facebook)
  • The exact moment an allged Turkish airstrike targeted the area between Tal Rifa’at and Kafr Nasseh, 10th July 2017. (via RuMaf facebook)
  • A man injured in an allged Turkish airstrike targeted the area between Tal Rifa’at and Kafr Nasseh, 10th July 2017. (via RuMaf facebook)
  • A man injured in an allged Turkish airstrike targeted the area between Tal Rifa’at and Kafr Nasseh, 10th July 2017. (via RuMaf facebook)
  • Civilians injured in an allged Turkish airstrike targeted the area between Tal Rifa’at and Kafr Nasseh, 10th July 2017. (via RuMaf facebook)
  • A man injured in an allged Turkish airstrike targeted the area between Tal Rifa’at and Kafr Nasseh, 10th July 2017. (via RuMaf facebook)

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces
  • Turkish Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    2–4
  • (2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    4–24
  • Airwars grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS417 TS025

Incident date

December 17, 2016

Location

الباب, Al-Bab, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.371972, 37.51631 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. marker Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

City

Airwars assessment

Three unnamed civilian males were reported killed in a Turkish (or less likely Coalition) action at al Bab. The Coalition later denied responsibility.

According to Step News, “Turkish planes targeted al Bab, east of Aleppo, with three raids and there are news about casualties.” VDC later reported three unidentfied male civilian deaths – though said these were a result of actions by “International Coalition forces.”

In an emailed response to a report submitted by Airwars on this and other incidents in December 2016, Coalition officials said the event was presently assessed as ‘Not credible’ with “no Coalition strikes conducted in the geographical area of the reported civilian casualties.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    3
  • (3 men)
  • Airwars grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected belligerents
    US-led Coalition, Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Tweet reporting more than 50 alleged Turkish raids targeting al Bab over the last 12 hours. 17th December 2016. (via Muhammad Smiry)

US-led Coalition Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    US-led Coalition
  • US-led Coalition position on incident
    Non credible
    Insufficient information to assess that, more likely than not, a Coalition strike resulted in civilian casualties.
  • Reason for non-credible assessment
    No Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area
  • Civilian deaths conceded
    None
  • Civilian injuries conceded
    None
  • Stated location
    near Al Bab, Syria
    Nearest population center

Civilian casualty statements

US-led Coalition
  • Aug 4, 2017
  • After a review of available information it was assessed that no Coalition strikes were conducted in the geographical area of the reported civilian casualties.

Original strike reports

US-led Coalition

For December 16th-18th 2016 the Coalition has publicly reported no strikes in the vicinity.

France
  • English
    /
    Original

For December 14th to 20th, France reports 10 strikes: 8 in Iraq – 7 of which were in Mosul – and 2 in Syria. They reported that 16 targets were destroyed.

#Chammal : 10 frappes contre Daech en Irak et en Syrie cette semaine, 16 objectifs détruits.

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces
  • Turkish Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    3
  • (3 men)
  • Airwars grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected belligerents
    US-led Coalition, Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS050

Incident date

January 14, 2017

Location

بزاعة , Beza’a city, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.3829071, 37.56666 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. marker Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

City

Airwars assessment

One woman died and one man was injured in shelling on Beza’a city, Syria, according to local media.

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, “a woman was killed and her husband was wounded in Turkish artillery and rocket shelling on areas in Bzaah town near al-Bab city”.

Al Bab24 reported the death of “the wife of Ahmad Salah Kassem, the daughter of Mr. Haseeb” in “artillery shelling” – though it didn’t name the culprit.

There are no other details at this time.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • the wife of Ahmad Salah Kassem Adult female the daughter of Mr. Haseeb killed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 woman)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected belligerents
    Turkish Armed Forces, Unknown

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Facebook post naming the victim of an alleged Turkish airstrike, 13th January 2017. (via Al bab 24 facebook)

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces
  • Turkish Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Unknown Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown
  • Unknown position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    1
  • (1 woman)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected belligerents
    Turkish Armed Forces, Unknown

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS093

Incident date

September 1, 2017

Location

كفر لوسين, Kafr Luseen, Turkish-Syrian borders, Syria

Geolocation

36.256667, 36.716111 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. marker Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

A single source, the Step News Agency, reported that “a child was wounded by bullets fired by the Turkish army is in the camp of Zahra_Gulf in the area of Kafr Luseen on the border with Turkey and was transferred to a nearby hospital.”

No further details are currently available.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces
  • Turkish Armed Forces position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Armed Forces

Sources (1) [ collapse]