SDF vows retaliation for Turkish drone attacks

Turkish drone strikes in northeastern Syria have killed five people, including a YPJ commander and a YPG commander. The SDF indicate that the Turkish state has launched a new phase of attacks east of the Euphrates River.

The General Command of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) has released a statement on Turkey's killer drone attacks on northeastern Syria and vowed retaliation. Urging the U.S. and Russia, as guarantor powers, to take a stand against the Turkish attacks, SDF noted that Turkey has launched a new phase of attacks.

On Thursday, Turkish drone attacks in Qamişlo and Til Temir resulted in deaths and injuries. YPG commander Rênas Roj was killed in his car at 2 p.m. local time. This was followed at 6 p.m. by an attack on the Military Council's Communications Center in Til Temir, which killed YPJ Commander Sosin Bîrhat, Military Council Commander Egîd Girkêlegê and fighters Rubar Hesekê and Seyfullah Ehmed. Three other fighters were injured.

New phase of occupation attacks

The SDF statement continued: "As is publicly known, after the Turkish state's occupation attacks on Serêkaniyê and Girê Spî, a ceasefire was agreed upon under the guarantee of the USA and Russia. However, the Turkish state never abided by it and continued to attack our people in any form. In the past few days, another civilian vehicle has been attacked in Kobanê. In the attacks on Şehba, Ain Issa and Zirgan, which have been going on for more than a week, a woman was killed and a sixteen-year-old was injured.

The attacks show that the Turkish state has made a new decision and launched a new phase of occupation attacks on the region and especially on the area east of the Euphrates River. As SDF, we have been protecting our people as well as other peoples from ISIS terror and liberating the region from ISIS since the first day. We have mounted great resistance to the occupation by the Turkish state. In the same way, today we will not be silent to the occupation and we will fight against the brutal attacks of the Turkish state. The death of our commanders and fighters will not go unanswered.

The silence and lack of attitude of guarantor powers such as Russia and the USA encourages the Turkish state to intensify attacks on the region and civilians. We remind these powers of their responsibilities and call on them to take a stand."

"Our promise to the martyrs"

Regarding the fallen fighters, the SDF said that Rênas Roj was a member of the YPG's Military Council and one of the SDF's commanders: "Our companion came from eastern Kurdistan and spent his entire life in the Kurdistan liberation struggle. He fought in all parts of Kurdistan and came to Rojava like hundreds of other Kurds and internationalists to defend Kobanê against ISIS." After that, Rênas Roj participated in the liberation offensives in Manbij, Raqqa and Deir ez-Zor, and in the resistance against the Turkish invasions in 2018 and 2019.

Sosin Bîrhat was a member of the YPJ and SDF military councils and has also fought in various parts of Kurdistan. According to SDF, she has played a leading role especially in the resistance of Afrin and Aleppo Sheikh Maqsoud.

Egîd Girkêlegê was described by the SDF as an accomplished commander and fighter, and Rûbar Hesekê and Seyfullah Ehmed have fought against both ISIS and the Turkish occupiers and their mercenaries.

"Our attachment to the martyrs is the guarantee that we will hold the occupiers accountable and retaliate. The enemy will regret the occupation and its attacks on the population. This is what we promise to our martyrs. On this basis, we extend our condolences to the peoples of northern and eastern Syria and their relatives," the SDF Command said.