Turkey’s targeted attacks against civilian infrastructure in Rojava continue

Turkey continues its attacks against the infrastructure of the autonomous region of northern and eastern Syria unabated, targeting not only vital supply facilities, but also civilian settlement areas.

Turkey continues its attacks against the infrastructure of the autonomous region of northern and eastern Syria unabated. On Thursday alone, around fifteen targets have been bombed by combat drones so far, including water pumping stations and oil and fuel supply facilities. Civilians and residential areas have also been targeted. Areas in the Cizîrê region are in particular focus of the latest wave of attacks. According to unconfirmed reports, at least eight people were killed and six injured.

In the neighborhood of Mişêrfa in the canton of Hesekê, Turkish drones attacked a factory and a vehicle. Further airstrikes in the region were directed against the vicinity of the Washokani camp. The camp was established by the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) for displaced people after the Turkish occupation of Serêkaniyê (Ras al-Ain) in 2019 and has been the target of attacks before. Almost all of the Western aid organisations active there have already "fled" the camp, director Barzan Abdullah announced.

In Hesekê, Qamishlo and Amûdê, the Turkish air force bombed several transformer and electricity plants that supply large parts of the region with electricity. In Çilaxa, the aircraft hit a dam as well as an oil field, and an oil field and a fuel supply plant were bombed in Tirbespîyê. In the town of Çelebiyê near Kobanê, two people on a motorbike were killed in a Turkish drone attack. The attack took place in the village of Xirab Eşk.

The number of targeted attacks on partly densely populated villages is given as fifteen. Among others, Tawila in Til Temir, Til Hebeş near Amûdê and Qesif near Sirîn were bombed. In al-Rakba near Til Temir, a vital water pumping station was set on fire. In Tal Baydar, northeast of the city, a Turkish drone was taken out of the sky. Troops of the US-led international anti-ISIS coalition are reported to have shot down the aircraft. Near the district of Shera in Turkish-jihadist-occupied Afrin in north-western Syria, a kamikaze drone is said to have been outmanoeuvred during an attack flight.

The Turkish state has been systematically attacking inhabited settlements and infrastructure in AANES for a long time - to "protect the borders", as they keep saying. In recent years, dozens of civilians have been killed in these targeted attacks.

Now the Turkish government has openly announced that it will commit war crimes in Rojava, but so far, the West has not expressed more than "concern". Turkish foreign minister Hakan Fidan declared on Wednesday that the entire infrastructure in the north and east of Syria was a "legitimate" target of the security forces, the military and the intelligence service. Fidan justified the attacks by claiming that he wants to fight "terrorism" and uses the guerrillas' weekend attack on the General Directorate of Security of the Interior Ministry in Ankara as a pretext.

The Turkish government claims that the guerrillas involved in the action were trained in Syria and entered Turkey illegally from there. Both the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the AANES in Rojava as well as the People's Defence Forces (HPG) in Southern Kurdistan (Northern Iraq) rejected this account as a "lie" and a contrived pretext for war.