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

TI001

Incident date

July 25, 2015

Location

العمادية, Amadiyah, Kurdistan, Iraq

Geolocation

37.092003, 43.486966 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Town level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Town

Airwars assessment

Three civilians were reportedly injured in alleged Turkish airstrikes on Amadiyah, Iraq.

Iraqhurr reported intensive bombing on PKK positions in the area and said that it “led to the wounding of three civilians.”

Sputnik News also reported Turkish airstrikes in the area but did not mention civilian harm.

No additional details are presently known regarding this event.

The event coincided with a major Turkish ground and air operation against both ISIS and Kurdish forces in Syria, which the US-led Coalition later confirmed were unilateral actions by its erstwhile partner.

Turkey’s Prime Minister told reporters: “Bomb attacks were aimed at the known military targets, including Qandil in northern Iraq [notable as a sanctuary for the PKK], and at the most important command centers and weapon depots of ISIL in Syria. There were no civilians in these areas, none of them have died.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    3
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Unknown Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    3
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI002

Incident date

August 1, 2015

Location

زرجيلي, Zergele, Kurdistan, Iraq

Geolocation

36.063457, 45.332963 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Subdistrict level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Subdistrict

Airwars assessment

Multiple Turkish airstrikes reportedly killed eight or more residents and injured at least eight others – including a child – in an attack on the village of Zergele in the Kandil Mountains.

Alusmaria reported: “Turkish planes today bombed the village of Zergele north of the border, killing eight civilians, wounding ten others and destroying seven houses.”

Rudaw said ten civilians died and eleven were injured.

All Iraq News wrote that 22 houses were destroyed in the attack.

Amnesty International later concluded that none of the dead or injured were affiliated to the PKK: “Evidence gathered during a visit by Amnesty International to the village of Zergele three days after the airstrikes suggests all those killed and injured in the attack were not affiliated with the PKK. Amnesty International spoke to several eyewitnesses, including two doctors who rescued the wounded and three residents who consistently said that none of the dead or injured were PKK fighters and that there were no PKK fighters in the area. Those killed included a local mayor and two municipality workers.

All the witnesses who were present at the time of the attack or arrived there shortly afterwards said that the victims wore civilian clothes and that they saw no weapons on the scene. Amnesty International reviewed 10 photographs and one video from the scene that were consistent with these witness statements.”

The international NGO also added the following: “The apparent absence of a military target within the vicinity of the airstrikes suggests that these strikes are unlawful whether or not there is an armed conflict between the Turkish authorities and the PKK. The Turkish government has displayed a flagrant disregard for the lives of local residents and failed to take necessary precautions to minimize harm to them, or to discriminate between them and PKK fighters.”

While early reporting put the numbers of dead between six and ten, eight killed and eight injured is the figure used by Amnesty and other sources.

The incident occured between 3:00 am and 5:00 am local time.

The victims were named as:

Family members (2)

  • Mohamed Ameen Adult male Peshmerga injured
  • Sinur Adult female Sister in law of Mohamed injured

Family members (4)

  • Gerbet Ahmed Adult female injured
  • Shukariya Ahmed Adult female Sister of Gerbet injured
  • Khadija Adult female Mother of Gerbet and Shukariya injured
  • Chilan Rasheed Child female Niece of Gerbet and Shukariya injured
  • Ayesha Ahmed Mustafa Adult female killed
  • Salih Mohamed Ameen Adult male Local mayor killed
  • Heybet Mohamed Ameen Age unknown male killed
  • Najeeb Aziz Age unknown male killed
  • Sama Khabat Age unknown male Municipality worker killed
  • Endomen Sharawonch Age unknown male Municipality worker killed
  • Karoh Mohamed Ameen Adult male Identified as peshmerga by Amnesty killed
  • Abdulkader Bakr Adult male Identified as peshmerga by Amnesty killed

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    8 – 10
  • (1 child2 women5–7 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    8–11
  • Airwars grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown

Sources (6) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (3) [ collapse]

  • Turkish air strikes on August 1st in Zergele kill local residents according to a video published by Amnesty
  • 'Aftermath of airstrike in the village of Zergele, in the Kandil Mountains in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq on 1 August 2015' (via Amnesty International)
  • Investigation of a reported strike location at Zergele (Image from ANF via Amnesty)

Geolocation notes

Location of Zergele (via TRT)

Unknown Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    8 – 10
  • (1 child2 women5–7 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    8–11
  • Airwars grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown

Sources (6) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI003

Incident date

September 11, 2015

Location

قنديل, اقشين, الزاب, Qandil, Avashin and Zap, Kurdistan, Iraq

Geolocation

36.632443, 44.189773 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

Turkish air forces bombed positions of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in northern Iraq, the army said in a statement.

Airstrikes hit mountainous areas in northern Iraq, including Qandil, Avashin and Zap.

Turkish authorities said their strikes hit locations of the PKK rebels. However, Kurdish sources in northern Iraq reported via a single source that the attacks also caused civilian casualties.

There is currently no more information available on exact casualty numbers.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    2 – 3
  • Civilians reported injured
    2–3
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Unknown Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    2 – 3
  • Civilians reported injured
    2–3
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS038

Incident date

January 3, 2016

Location

الباب, Al Bab, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

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

Geolocation accuracy

City

Airwars assessment

According to local sources, 11 civilians were killed and 26 injured in an alleged Turkish airstrike on Al Bab, Syria.

Al Jazeera posted on Twitter that “11 people were killed and 26 wounded and an ambulance destroyed after Turkish bombardment of the city of Bab in the countryside of eastern Aleppo.”

Al Bab Al Hadath published a similar report.

Other sources like Smart News also reported airstrikes as well as artillery shelling but did not mention civilian harm.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    11
  • Civilians reported injured
    26
  • 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 (5) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (2) [ collapse]

  • 11 people were killed and 26 wounded and the destruction of an ambulance after the Turkish bombardment of the city of Bab in the countryside of eastern Aleppo (via AJASyria)
  • Footage showing the aftermath of the alleged Turkish airstrike on Al Bab, 3rd January 2017. (via Nadia Abdulaziz)

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    11
  • Civilians reported injured
    26
  • 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 (5) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI004

Incident date

February 4, 2016

Location

قرية الفاضلية, Fadhiliya, Kurdistan, Iraq

Geolocation

36.509167, 43.270278 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

Three civilians were reportedly killed in alleged Turkish airstrikes on Fadhiliya.

According to the Iraqi National News Agency, “the bombardment of Fadhiliya village at the foot of Mount Bachik, resulted in the deaths of three civilians and the wounding of two others.”

There is currently no other known source available.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    3
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Unknown Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    3
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS001

Incident date

March 14, 2016

Location

جكة, Jakka, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.607222, 37.295833 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

A single source, the Daesh-linked propaganda outlet Al A’amaq Media, reported an alleged ‘friendly fire’ event in the village of al Jakka: “An American plane carries out a raid by mistake on a position for the armed opposition on the outskirts of the village of Jakka in the northern Aleppo countryside, leading to deaths in their ranks.”

Earlier in the day Al A’amaq had reported a major assault on the Daesh-held location, claiming that “American planes and Turkish artillery are bombing the village of Jakka in the northern Aleppo countryside, while Syrian opposition forces try to storm it.”

No civilian casualties were reported in this instance.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerents
    Turkish Armed Forces, US-led Coalition

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

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

US-led Coalition Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerents
    Turkish Armed Forces, US-led Coalition

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI005

Incident date

July 17, 2016

Location

الفاضلية, Fadhiliya, Nineveh, Iraq

Geolocation

36.509167, 43.270278 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

A local MP complained that a number of civilians had been killed and injured in fresh Turkish shelling of Fadhiliya village.

Salim Juma told NRN News that artillery strikes from a nearby Turkish base at Bashiqa “killed and injured a number of civilians, including women and children.” The MP called on the regional Kurdish government to intervene, saying that eight houses had been destroyed in two days of recent ‘indiscriminate’ shelling.

No additional reports are presently known.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Unknown Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected belligerent
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

CS300 TS002

Incident date

August 28, 2016

Location

جب الكوسا, Jeb el Kussa, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.688187, 37.996683 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Geolocation accuracy

Village

Airwars assessment

Twenty people were reported killed and 50 injured after clashes at Jeb el Kussa, south of Jarabulus.

According to Al Alam “these people fell during battles between militants and extremist groups backed by Turkey and the so-called “democratic forces of Syria” and armed groups backed by America.

The Syrian Observatory confirmed casualties in the ranks of the local fighters backed by the Turks in the region.” Russia Today, citing the Syrian Foreign Ministy, said those who died were civilians but blamed “air and artillery weapons of the Turkish army in coordination with armed groups.”

Most media blamed Turkey. However local Free Syrian Army factions accused both Turkey and the US-led Coalition of “deliberate raids by warplanes on al Sreirat and Bu’r al Koussa committing brutal massacres against the unarmed civilians of the elders and women and children killed tens of martyrs and the wounded.”

Ara news: “Syrian Kurds have accused Turkish troops of committing a massacre against civilians in the villages of Jeb al-Kousa and Megher-Sresat, south of Jarabulus. According to human rights organisations, at least 20 Arab civilians were killed and 50 injured under Turkish bombardment.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Family members (1)

Family members (1)

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    20
  • (2 children2 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    50
  • 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 August 23rd-24th, the Coalition reported that "Near Manbij, four strikes struck three separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed a vehicle.”

Turkish Armed Forces Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilians reported killed
    20
  • (2 children2 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    50
  • 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]