Turkish Military in Iraq & Syria

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

Belligerent
Turkish Military
Country
Iraq
start date
end date
Civilian Harm Status
Belligerent Assessment
Declassified Documents
Infrastructure

Incident Code

TI045

Incident date

August 3, 2020

Location

Nohadra, Duhok, Iraq

Geolocation

36.856117, 42.980832 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

A single source reported that civilians died in alleged Turkish airstrikes on civilian vehicles in Nohadra, Duhok governorate, on August 3rd, 2020.

Syria C Press wrote that “more civilians were killed on Monday in Nohadra (Duhok) in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq as a result of the ongoing Turkish military operation in northern Iraq after their car was targeted by a Turkish air strike.”

Currently, further information is unavailable.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the city of Nohadra, for which the generic coordinates are: 36.856117, 42.980832. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Single source claim
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Suspected target
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Turkish Military Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Military
  • Turkish Military position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Single source claim
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Suspected target
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI074

Incident date

October 9, 2021

Location

سيدان, Sidan, Sulaymaniyah, Iraq

Geolocation

35.58366, 44.72131 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Between one and two people, including a woman, were killed and two civilians were injured in alleged Turkish drone strikes on Saydani village on October 9, 2021. The majority of sources refer to all of the casualties from the incident as civilians except BasNews, which identified two Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK) fighters as being killed.

Rudaw News reported that a woman was killed and two others were wounded in Turkish drone strikes. The person killed had not yet been identified because “the body is mangled and therefore we can’t determine the age of the deceased,” Sharif Rahim, spokesperson for Chamchamal’s health directorate, told Rudaw, adding that “the wounded are between 25 and 35 years of age.”

According to BasNews, two Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK) fighters were killed in the drone strike, which struck a car. BasNews was the only source that identified PKK fighters as being involved and not civilians. Hawar News specifically referred to a “civilian car” being hit by the airstrikes and identified those injured as being civilians.

Xeber24 News added that the two injured civilians were transferred to Chamchamal Hospital, the body of the woman who was killed was taken to forensic medicine in Sulaymaniyah.

The Political Bureau of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan issued a statement to public opinion, which stated: “The Political Bureau of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan condemns the bombing by Turkish planes of the Qaranjir border near the city of Kirkuk, which left casualties and damages.”

All of the sources attributed the strikes to Turkish drones or reported that they “believed” Turkey was responsible.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Sidan (سيدان), for which the generic coordinates are: 35.58366, 44.72131. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (0–1 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Suspected target
    Other
  • Belligerents reported killed
    0–2

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Turkish Military Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Military
  • Turkish Military position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0 – 1
  • (0–1 women)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Suspected target
    Other
  • Belligerents reported killed
    0–2

Sources (9) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI027

Incident date

August 29, 2019

Location

شران , Sherane, Duhok, Iraq

Geolocation

37.012730, 42.947149 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

One civilian was reportedly injured in a Turkish airstrike on Sherane.

ANF said: “Turkish fighter jets shelled the village of Sherane in Duhok’s Amadiya district in South Kurdistan today noon. The bombardment has reportedly left a civilian wounded.”

RojNews wrote: “On Thursday, Turkish warplanes bombed an area belonging to the Amedi (Amadiyah) district of Dohuk governorate, wounding one civilian.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Sherane ( شران ), for which the generic coordinates are: 37.012730, 42.947149. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • Picture of the supposed strike (via ANF)

Turkish Military Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Military
  • Turkish Military position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military

Sources (2) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI053

Incident date

December 12, 2020

Location

ديرالوك, Deraluk , Duhok, Iraq

Geolocation

37.056612, 43.652715 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Basnews reported that three children were killed in an alleged Turkish airstrike on Deraluk town of Amedi district, Duhok province, on December 12th, 2020.

No further info is available at the moment.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Deraluk (ديرالوك), for which the generic coordinates are: 37.056612, 43.652715 Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Single source claim
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3
  • (3 children)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Suspected target
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Turkish Military Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Military
  • Turkish Military position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Single source claim
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    3
  • (3 children)
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Suspected target
    Unknown

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI083

Incident date

June 17, 2022

Location

كلار, Kalar, Sulaymaniyah, Iraq

Geolocation

34.626923, 45.318998 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Four people were killed and one was injured in alleged Turkish drone strikes on the town of Kalar on June 17, 2022. Conflicting reporting was given as to whether all of those killed and injured were members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) or whether at least one of the people killed, Hussein Shibli, was in a civilian political role in the government.

Rudaw News reported that a Turkish drone struck a car carrying alleged members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), killing at least four PKK affiliates and injuring another, adding that a jeep vehicle was set on fire when it was hit by a Turkish drone at around 9:30am.

Kurdistan 24 also quoted the Directorate General of Counter Terrorism (CTD) of the Kurdistan Region’s Security Council (KRSC) in reporting that five people were in the car that was hit, four were killed and one was wounded, and did not elaborate on the identities of the casualties.

According to Alaraby News, Hussein Shibli, co-chairman of the executive council of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES), was one of the people killed in the drone strike. He was reportedly on a formal visit to the Iraqi Kurdistan region, according to AANES officials. “Our comrade Hussein Shibli, also known as Farhad Shibli, was on a formal visit to the Kurdistan region for medical treatment. He was martyred in a terrorist attack in Kalar,” Avin Swed, representative of the AANES in the Kurdistan region told The New Arab, quoted by Alaraby, in a phone interview. She added that DNA tests confirmed that Shibli was killed, the driver of the car has been injured, and the identity of the three others has yet to be identified as they were badly burnt.

The Arab Weekly quoted Turkey’s Anadolu news agency, who reported on Sunday that the Turkish intelligence service managed to “neutralise the Syrian terrorist Hussein Shibli, the co-chair of the so-called Central Executive Council of the Syrian Autonomous Administration of the terrorist PKK organisation, in the city of Sulaymaniyah” in northern Iraq, and that he was “close to Farhad Abdi Shaheen, one of the leaders of the YPG/PKK in Syria”.

The Syrian Democratic Forces described Shibli as a “political leader in building and achieving organisational, intellectual and social construction projects” in Syria. Bedran Chiya Kurd, Co-chairmanship of the Executive Council of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria, issued a statement that “targeting  our comrade Ferhad who was on a civil and humanitarian mission in Southern Kurdistan in the Kelar region that is some 200 km away from Turkish borders comes within the terrorist acts that target the best of our fighters in the Region”.

The Arab Weekly also referred to “observers” that suggested instead that the assassination was carried out by a locally-operated suicide drone or by the detonation of an explosive device under his car, but did not specify who was then responsible for this operation. All other sources attributed the drone strike to Turkey.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the city of Kalar (كلار), for which the generic coordinates are: 34.626923, 45.318998. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Suspected target
    YPG/SDF
  • Belligerents reported killed
    5
  • Belligerents reported injured
    1

Sources (7) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (4) [ collapse]

  • Destruction caused by alleged Turkish drone strike on a vehicle in the town of Kalar on June 17, 2022. (Image posted by Rudaw News)
  • Destruction caused by alleged Turkish drone strike on a vehicle in the town of Kalar on June 17, 2022. (Image posted by Kurdistan24)
  • Hussein Shibli, also known as Farhad Shibli, referred to by conflicting sources as being a member of the PKK or a political figure, was killed by an alleged Turkish drone strike on Kalar town on June 17, 2022. (Image posted by The Arab Weekly)
  • Hussein Shibli, also known as Farhad Shibli, referred to by conflicting sources as being a member of the PKK or a political figure, was killed by an alleged Turkish drone strike on Kalar town on June 17, 2022. (Image posted by The Arab Weekly)

Turkish Military Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Military
  • Turkish Military position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Suspected target
    YPG/SDF
  • Belligerents reported killed
    5
  • Belligerents reported injured
    1

Sources (7) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI009

Incident date

September 20, 2017

Location

شمال العراق, North of Iraq, Erbil, Iraq

Geolocation

36.915000, 44.041944 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Province/governorate level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Local media reported that the Turkish air force had bombed sites belonging to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party in north Iraq – though there was no information available on civilian harm as a result of these actions.

RT reported that “the Turkish army said on Thursday that the shelling hit targets in the mountainous regions of Zab, Afashin and Baysan in northern Iraq, close to the border with Turkey. The army gave no further details on the timing of the strike or targets, but confirmed that all the aircraft had returned safely.”

According to Alrafdain, “The Turkish Air Force announced that the Turkish planes bombed the camps of the Workers ‘Party militia. This resulted in the destruction of weapons and ammunition stores as part of the Turkish forces’ campaign in south and south-eastern Turkey and northern Iraq.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the province/governorate of North of Iraq (شمال العراق), for which the generic coordinates are: 36.915000, 44.041944. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Turkish Military Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Military
  • Turkish Military position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military

Sources (4) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI035

Incident date

April 28, 2020

Location

Xakurke, Erbil, Iraq

Geolocation

36.857648, 44.678650 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Subdistrict level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Two civilians were killed in alleged Turkish airstrikes in Xakurke area, Erbil province, on April 28th 2020, according to local sources. Another man was severely injured.

Hengaw wrote that Fakhir Tazaward (35) and Rasheed Miro (36) from the city Oshnavieh, Iranian Kurdistan areas, were killed in a Turkish airstrike as they were collecting plants in the mountains. Other sources also wrote that the men were doing agricultural work.

A source told Hengaw that: “The bodies of the two young men have so far remained in the highlands of Xakurke and their families have not been able to transport them to the city.”

According to @Rojname, another man had been severely injured in the bombardment.

Bas News reported that “the Turkish warplanes reportedly bombarded the borders between the Kurdistan region, Iran, and Turkey on Tuesday morning.”

The incident occured in the morning.

The victims were named as:

35 years old male from Oshnavieh killed
36 years old male from Oshnavieh killed

Geolocation notes (1) [ collapse]

Reports of the incident mention the mountainous area in the Xakurke region. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for this region are: 36.857648, 44.678650.

  • Reports of the incident mention the mountainous area in the Xakurke region.

    Imagery:
    Google Earth

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Suspected target
    Unknown

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Turkish Military Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Military
  • Turkish Military position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • (2 men)
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Suspected target
    Unknown

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TI064

Incident date

July 30, 2021

Location

سنكسر, Sinksar, Sulaymaniyah, Iraq

Geolocation

36.247593, 45.006833 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Two civilians, or members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), were killed in alleged Turkish airstrikes on the village of Sinksar, Sulaymaniyah governorate on July 30, 2021, according to local media reports.

Mawazin News reported that the director of the Snaksar district in Sulaymaniyah, Nehru Abdullah, said in a press statement “During the past 24 hours, Turkish planes bombed the Qandil Mountains and the surrounding villages in search of PKK fighters, killing two civilians who were on a motorbike in the Sinksar area of Bashdar district in the Raparin district administration. Abdullah added, “It is not known to which side the two victims belonged so far, and we could not verify the matter due to fears of repeated bombing”.

@AnatoliaIntel reported: “In the operation carried out by the MIT in the Kandil region, 2 PKK terrorists in civilian clothes were neutralized while driving on motorcycles.”

24 AE also quoted Abdullah as saying that “civilians are worried and terrified as a result of the repeated bombing of Turkish planes, which is causing the burning of forests and farms in villages.”

Firat News Agency also reported that two people were killed on a motorcycle in the bombing and that “Turkish planes have been bombing the slopes of Mount Qandil for more than 24 hours”.

A page dedicated to martyrs of the People’s Defence Units (HPG) said two of their members died in the Qandil mountain range on July 30th, 2021.

All of the sources that reported on the incident attributed the strikes to Turkish planes.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Sinksar (سنكسر), for which the generic coordinates are: 36.247593, 45.006833. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Belligerents reported killed
    2

Sources (10) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    An image alleging to show the bodies of two Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) members who were killed in a Turkish airtstrike in the village of Sinksar, Sulaymaniyah governorate on July 30, 2021. Other sources allege the victims of the strike were civilians. (Uploaded by @AnatoliaIntel)

Turkish Military Assessment:

  • Suspected belligerent
    Turkish Military
  • Turkish Military position on incident
    Not yet assessed

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    2
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Fair
    Reported by two or more credible sources, with likely or confirmed near actions by a belligerent.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Belligerents reported killed
    2

Sources (10) [ collapse]