Civilian Casualties

Civilian Casualties

Incident Code

TI080 YI003

Incident date

May 26, 2022

Location

زيوا, Ziwa , Dohuk, Iraq

Geolocation

37.198798, 43.189773 Note: The accuracy of this location is to Nearby landmark level. Continue to map

Airwars assessment

At least two children were killed and up to two others, including a child, were injured in alleged Turkish or Kurdish strikes on Ziwa village on May 26, 2022.

Birqi Omar, mukhtar (chieftain) of Ziwa village in Amedi town, told Rudaw’s Hunar Rashid that people from nearby areas were picnicking when bombs struck. “As far as we know, the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) on Metina mountain targeted Turkish military base with three bombs. Then, Turkey bombed our families, killing two people, aged 10, and injuring another,” said the mukhtar. A witness, whose hand was stained with the blood of one of the dead children, told Rudaw that they had left all their picnic goods in the incident area.

According to BasNews, “at least two children were killed and two other civilians were injured” by two rockets. Kurdistan24 identified the two wounded civilians as being adult males and Hawar News added that the two children were aged 6 and 7. Yekiti Media provided the names of the victims, Youssef Kaufan, 14, and Afand Hashiyari, 10.

BasNews added that the victims were reportedly collecting spring plants while another source said they were attending an outdoor wedding celebration. A source told Shafaq News Agency that there was “a big celebration when the bombing occurred, which led to the death of three victims and the injury of several others as a result.” He added that “the wounded were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment, while the bodies were evacuated to the forensic medicine department.”

A photo uploaded by Agency France Press identified one of the injured children as nine-year-old, Sipan Farhad. He was reported to be receiving treatment at a hospital in Dohuk following the incident. Sipan told Rudaw he was playing football with his friends when the strike happened, “I went upstairs while Yousif and Avand went to bring the ball back off the street and when I came down, a bomb hit the ground”, “Yousif told me to bring water because there was a dirty glass and we wanted to clean it,” he added.

Kovan Haji, Yousif’s father, told Rudaw that in the days before his son’s death he had promised him a present for completing the school year. “I wanted to grant my son a big prize. He was not only my son, but he was my friend, and he was always with me even when things were not going well.” The families told Rudaw the missiles came from Metina mountain, only meters away from them.

Witnesses told Shafaq News Agency, “The people of (Ziwa) village were celebrating near (Ardana) village of Bamerni district in Amadiyah district, north of Dohuk, when two artillery shells fell near the celebrants, killing three children between the ages of 10 and 11 years. Another 8-year-old child was wounded and is now lying in an emergency hospital in Dohuk. The father of the injured child explained to Shafaq News, that his son was wounded by shrapnel from the bombing in his arm and chest, but his health condition is stable now.

Rudaw News quoted various sources that blamed different sources for the strikes, with Kurdistan Region’s Directorate General of Counter Terrorism (CTD) and Warshin Salman, mayor of Amedi, attributing the strikes to the PKK while PKK-affiliated Rojnews reported that Turkey carried out the bombing. A Facebook post from Abo Mostafa AlJoboore quoted a father of one of the victims, who confirmed that it was the Turkish that carried out the bombing, not the PKK.

The Media Center of the People’s Protection Forces (HPJ), the military wing of the anti-Ankara Kurdistan Workers’ Party, released a statement denying that they carried out the bombing: “The State of Turkey attacked our citizens in South Kurdistan (Kurdistan Region) when they were on a picnic, which resulted in the death of three martyrs, including two children.”

The local time of the incident is unknown.

  • Youssef Kaufan 14 years old killed
  • Afand Hashiyari 10 years old killed
  • Sipan Farhad 9 years old male injured

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    2 – 3
  • (2 children)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • 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 attackers
    Turkish Military, YPG
  • Suspected target
    YPG/SDF

Sources (24) [ collapse]

Media
from sources (9) [ collapse]

  • Children victims of the strikes on Zewa village on May 26, 2022. (Image posted by Rudaw News)
  • A relative checks on Sipan Farhad, a 9-year-old boy wounded following a rocket attack in the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) of Iraq, at a hospital in the northern Iraqi city of Dohuk, May 26, 2022. (Image courtesy of AFP)

Geolocation notes

Reports of the incident mention an undisclosed area of Metin mountain (جبل متین), in the vicinity of Ziwa (زيوا) village. Due to limited satellite imagery and information available to Airwars, we were unable to verify the location further. The generic coordinates for Ziwa are: 37.00874, 43.45609.

Turkish Military Assessment:

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

YPG Assessment:

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

Summary

  • Strike status
    Contested strike
  • Strike type
    Airstrike and/or Artillery
  • Civilian harm reported
    None known
  • Civilians reported killed
    2 – 3
  • (2 children)
  • Civilians reported injured
    2
  • 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 attackers
    Turkish Military, YPG
  • Suspected target
    YPG/SDF

Sources (24) [ collapse]