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
Civilian Harm Status
Belligerent Assessment
Declassified Documents
Infrastructure

Incident Code

TS538

Incident date

August 4, 2022

Location

تل رفعت, Tel Rifaat, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.472576, 37.096272 Note: The accuracy of this location is to City level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Seven to nine people, including up to seven children, were “seriously” injured by an alleged Turrkish drone strike in Tel Rifaat city centre, in the Aleppo countryside on August 4th 2022.

Hawar News also reported that this attack “resulted in injuries” but did not state how many.

ANHA reported that the names of the nine injured people were: Donia Othman, aged 6, Mahmoud Gharib Mamo, aged 6, and Hussein Jamal Qassem, aged 7, Evelyn Abdel Rahman Haider, aged 13, Orivan Muhammad Abdo, aged 15, Ronahi Selo, aged 27, Hussein Bayram Aklo, aged 43, Sabah Hanan Hamo, aged 10, Arzia Ahmed Rasho, aged 23.

ANHA also reported that according to the medical staff in Afrin Hospital, Mahmoud Gharib Mamo, aged 6, was injured critically and is not stable. He was transferred to the city of Aleppo for a head injury.

Evelyn Abdel Rahman Haider, aged 13, who was injured told ANHA that she “was at home when my friend asked me to go eat ice cream and on our way suddenly we heard a loud explosion that occured near us and I fainted, and I only remember that someone carried me and put me in the car where I was taken to Tel Rifaat Hospital.”

The mother of Evelyn said that “not a day passes without being bombarded by the Turkish occupation army and its mercenaries, and today my daughter and a number of children were injured as a result of the bombing.”

One family of injured children told ANHA that “our children are deprived of even playing as a result of the bombing.”

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, there is a Russian base there.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Donia Othman
6 years old female injured
Mahmoud Gharib Mamo
6 years old male injured
Hussein Jamal Qassem
7 years old male injured
Evelyn Abdel Rahman Haider
13 years old female injured
Orivan Muhammad Abdo
15 years old male injured
Ronahi Selo
27 years old male injured
Hussein Bayram Aklo
43 years old male injured
Sabah Hanan Hamo
10 years old female injured
Arzia Ahmed Rasho
23 years old female injured

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    7–9
  • 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 (8) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (10) [ collapse]

  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photos of those injured by alleged Turkish drone strike in Tel Rifaat, Aleppo on August 4th 2022 (Images via Hawar News)
  • Photos of those injured by alleged Turkish drone strike in Tel Rifaat, Aleppo on August 4th 2022 (Images via Hawar News)
  • Photos of those injured by alleged Turkish drone strike in Tel Rifaat, Aleppo on August 4th 2022 (Images via Hawar News)
  • Photos of those injured by alleged Turkish drone strike in Tel Rifaat, Aleppo on August 4th 2022 (Images via Hawar News)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photos of those injured by alleged Turkish drone strike in Tel Rifaat, Aleppo on August 4th 2022 (Images via Hawar News)
  • Photos of those injured by alleged Turkish drone strike in Tel Rifaat, Aleppo on August 4th 2022 (Images via Hawar News)
  • Photos of those injured by alleged Turkish drone strike in Tel Rifaat, Aleppo on August 4th 2022 (Images via Hawar News)
  • Photos of those injured by alleged Turkish drone strike in Tel Rifaat, Aleppo on August 4th 2022 (Images via Hawar News)
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Photos of those injured by alleged Turkish drone strike in Tel Rifaat, Aleppo on August 4th 2022 (Images via Hawar News)

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the city of Tel Rifaaf (تل رفعت), for which the generic coordinates are: 36.472576, 37.096272. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Turkish Military Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    7–9
  • 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 (8) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS565

Incident date

November 20, 2022

Location

ميشنور, Meştenûr, Hassakah, Syria

Airwars assessment

Up to three civilians, including two journalists, were injured when Turkish forces bombed the outskirts of Meştenûr on November 20, 2022.

Hawar News reported that a correspondent for Sterk TV named Muhammad Jarada was injured when Turkish forces bombed the outskirts of Meştenûr. Turkish warplanes bombed Al-Jadida neighborhood, Kanya Kurdan neighborhood, and the village of Qramogh, in addition to Meştenûr hill.

Kobani News reported that a journalist for Ronahi TV was injured by a Turkish drone and that his health condition was almost stable (it is unclear if this is referring to the same journalist named Muhammad).

Farhad Shami, official of the Media Center of the Syrian Democratic Force, announced that three civilians were wounded in Kobani while @RojavaIC specified that two journalists were injured.

@RojavaIC identified a medical building, which was used as a coronavirus center during the peak of the pandemic, as being completely destroyed in the bombing near Kobani. The civilians were injured in a double tap strike on the site of the medical building, with the second strike occurring when journalists arrived to report on the bombing.

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

The incident occured in the morning.

The victims were named as:

Muhammad Jarada
Age unknown male injured

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian infrastructure
    Healthcare facility
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    2–3
  • 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 (7) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (6) [ collapse]

  • One of the civilians injured by alleged Turkish strikes near Kobane on November 20, 2022. (Image posted by Hawar News)
  • One of the civilians injured by alleged Turkish strikes near Kobane on November 20, 2022. (Image posted by Kobani News via Facebook)
  • One of the civilians injured by alleged Turkish strikes near Kobane on November 20, 2022. (Image posted by Kobani News via Facebook)
  • One of the civilians injured by alleged Turkish strikes near Kobane on November 20, 2022. (Image posted by Dijla via Facebook)
  • alleged Turkish strikes near Kobane on November 20, 2022. (Image posted by Rojava Information Center)
  • alleged Turkish strikes near Kobane on November 20, 2022. (Image posted by Rojava Information Center)

Turkish Military Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike
  • Civilian infrastructure
    Healthcare facility
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    2–3
  • 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 (7) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS595

Incident date

May 17, 2023

Location

مخيم عين عيسى, Ain Issa camp, Raqqa, Syria

Geolocation

36.400501, 38.849306 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Nearby landmark level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

Two civilians were injured by alleged Turkish shelling of Ain Issa camp on May 17, 2023.

Hawar News reported that during the second incident in Ain Issa district on May 17th, two civilians were injured when Turkish forces bombarded Ain Issa camp. Correspondents for Hawar added that the shelling caused an outbreak of fire in the camp, and firefighting teams could not reach the scene to put out the fire due to continuous shelling. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights added that both civilians injured were taken to the hospital to receive treatment, and an image posted by Hawar News shows two men being treated for injuries.

Ronahi TV provided the names of the injured: Muhammad Al-Balikh and Mahmoud Al-Jassem.

All of the sources that reported on the incident attributed the shelling to Turkey.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Muhammad Al-Balikh محمد البليخ
Age unknown male injured
Mahmoud Al-Jassem محمود الجاسم
Age unknown male injured

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Artillery
  • Civilian infrastructure
    IDP or refugee camp
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • 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

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (1) [ collapse]

  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Victims of alleged Turkish shelling of Ain Issa camp on May 17, 2023. (Image posted by Hawar News)

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the Ain Issa Camp (مخيم عين عيسى) for which the generic coordinates are: 36.400501, 38.849306. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Turkish Military Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Artillery
  • Civilian infrastructure
    IDP or refugee camp
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • 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

Sources (5) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS623

Incident date

August 16, 2023

Location

راس العين , Ras Al Ayn, Al-Hasakah, Syria

Airwars assessment

On the 16th of August, 2023, at least four civilians, including a child and a woman, were injured in an outbreak of violence between two reportedly Turkish backed armed factions in the Al Mahatta neighborhood of the city of Ras Al Ayn, in Syria’s Al Hasakah Governorate.

The clashes allegedly began after raids carried out by the military police and the Hamza Division on homes belonging to members of the Al Mawali and the Suleiman Shah Brigade. The raids were aimed at smugglers that refused to pay their share of the proceeds to the police and to the Hamza Division, according to reports from both the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and Foxpress. Both sources also reported that civilian women were assaulted during the raids and civilian’s possessions were stolen. In retaliation, according to a source speaking to the North Press Agency,  “Nawaf al-Tarkawi, one of Suleiman Shah’s leaders in the city of Ras al-Ain, attacked the headquarters of the Abu Qafs group of the Hamzah faction with [12.7 mm] medium machine guns and RPGs in the center of the city, which led to six casualties, including two civilians, one of whom was a child. In critical condition, they were taken to the city hospital.” In addition, NPA and Foxpress reported the injury of a woman and three men after a stray shell breached the wall of their house, with NPA mentioning material damage in addition to the civilian injuries from the clashes.

All sources covering the incident have reported the Turkish backed factions as belligerents, and the violence between them as the reason for the civilian injuries – however, at present it is not clear which of the factions are responsible for each of these casualties.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Artillery, Ground operation
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    4–5
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Belligerents reported injured
    4

Sources (3) [ collapse]

Turkish Military Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Artillery, Ground operation
  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    Unknown
  • Civilians reported injured
    4–5
  • Cause of injury / death
    Heavy weapons and explosive munitions
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Contested
    Competing claims of responsibility e.g. multiple belligerents, or casualties also attributed to ground forces.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military
  • Belligerents reported injured
    4

Sources (3) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS665

Incident date

December 5, 2023

Location

حربل, village of Harbel in the Al-Shahba area, northern countryside of Aleppo, Aleppo, Syria

Airwars assessment

On Tuesday, December 5, 2023, a Kurdish civilian man was seriously wounded while driving his car by an alleged drone strike by the Turkish military on the village of Harbel in the Al-Shahba area, in the northern countryside of Aleppo, Syria. According to the local sources, the attack was perpetrated with a “suicide drone”.

According to the Facebook account “Human Rights Afrin”, a 38-year old man named Azad Khalil Hamada sustained injuries to his leg, and his car was damaged. It was reported that Azad belonged to the forcibly displaced people of Afrin. He appeared in an image shared by this account as a middle-aged bearded man in a brown pullover and jeans. A picture of his damaged white “Kia” auto was also posted.

Afrin Muhajar Facebook user also shared an image of Azad lying on the hospital bed with his arm in a cast, so likely his arm was also injured.

Where the sources identified the belligerent, all the sources attributed the strike to the Turkish military.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Azad Khalil Hamada آزاد خليل حمادة
38 years old male injured

Summary

  • Strike status
    Likely strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike, Drone Strike
  • 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 (7) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (3) [ collapse]

  • Source: Human Rights Afrin Facebook
  • Source: Human Rights Afrin Facebook
  • This media contains graphic content. Click to unblur.

    Source: Afrin Muhajar facebook

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
  • 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 (7) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS106

Incident date

January 21, 2018

Location

شيرا, Shera, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.617500, 36.936944 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

The Kurdish Red Crescent reported that four civilians were injured in the vicinity of Shera in Afrin canton.

Injured civilians were named in a report shared with Airwars.

No additional details are presently known.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Saed Mussa
Adult male leg injury, named in a report shared with Airwars injured
Muhammad Horro
Adult male leg injury, named in a report shared with Airwars injured
Khayri Darwesh
Adult male shock, named in a report shared with Airwars injured
Unidentified woman
Adult female named in a report shared with Airwars killed

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    4
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military

Sources (1) [ collapse]

    • English
    • English

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Shera (شيرا), for which the generic coordinates are: 36.617500, 36.936944. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Turkish Military Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    4
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military

Sources (1) [ collapse]

    • English
    • English

Incident Code

TS169

Incident date

February 9, 2018

Location

جولاق, Jolak, Jindires, Afrin, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.391667, 36.693056 Note: The accuracy of this location is to District level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

A single source, named SotKurdistan, reported that a “70-year-old Issa Bakkar Issa was injured in the Turkish bombardment of the city centre of Jolak town in Jandarsa”, Syria.

There are no other known details relating to this allegation at this time.

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Issa Bakkar Issa
70 years old injured

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the district of Jolak, Jindires, Afrin (جولاق), for which the generic coordinates are: 36.391667, 36.693056. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Turkish Military Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    1
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Incident Code

TS201

Incident date

February 15, 2018

Location

جنديرس,عفرين , Jindires, Afrin, Aleppo, Syria

Geolocation

36.391667, 36.693056 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Village level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

According to the Kurdish Red Crescent, two civilians were wounded with various shrapnel injuries in an alleged Turkish shelling of Jindires, Syria.

The victims were identified by names and age.

No additional details are presently known.

 

The local time of the incident is unknown.

The victims were named as:

Ahmad Rajab
31 years old male various shrapnel injuries injured
Ahmad Dibo
31 years old male various shrapnel injuries injured

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military

Sources (1) [ collapse]

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention the village of Jindires, Afrin (جنديرس,عفرين ), for which the generic coordinates are: 36.391667, 36.693056. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further.

Turkish Military Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Civilian harm reported
    Yes
  • Civilians reported killed
    0
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • Airwars civilian harm grading
    Weak
    Single source claim, though sometimes featuring significant information.
  • Suspected attacker
    Turkish Military

Sources (1) [ collapse]