Turkish army bombs hospital in Dêrik

A Turkish airstrike in the north-eastern Syrian town of Dêrik completely destroyed a hospital belonging to the autonomous administration.

A hospital in Dêrik (Al-Malikiya) in the autonomous region of northern and eastern Syria was completely destroyed in an air strike by the Turkish army. It was initially unclear whether the bombing resulted in casualties. The incident only became known on Friday afternoon, as the telephone network also collapsed in large parts of the region due to a widespread failure of the power supply as a result of a massive wave of airstrikes by Turkey the previous day. Emergency forces are searching for possible victims.

The hospital that was presumably bombed last night is located in the village of Girê Vira (also Girê Fera) in the south-east of Dêrik and functioned as the Covid 19 clinic until recently. Together with the "mobile clinic" there, a health project of the Berlin-based association "Städtepartnerschaft Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg - Dêrik" and the Free Women's Foundation in Syria (WJAS), the Corona hospital was the only place to go in case of illness for many people in the rural surroundings of Dêrik. Deliberate airstrikes on hospitals constitute war crimes under international law.

Turkey carried out its heaviest attacks on civilian infrastructure in northeastern Syria for a long time on Thursday. Numerous armed drones and fighter jets entered the autonomous region's US-controlled airspace and bombed vital facilities such as substations and electricity distribution stations, water pumping stations, oil and gas production facilities as well as petrol stations, dams, factories, a camp for displaced persons and several villages. Among other things, the energy infrastructure of Hesekê, Qamişlo and Amûdê was destroyed, and large parts of the regions are cut off from electricity.

According to the latest information, more than forty targets have been bombed. Many places have come under fire several times, the Internal Security Forces (Asayîş) said on Friday, putting the current number of casualties from the Turkish air strikes at twelve dead and the same number injured. Six of the victims are members of the Internal Security Forces, the rest are civilians.

On Wednesday, Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan named "the infrastructure of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and the People's Defence Units (YPG) in Iraq and Syria as legitimate targets" of attack and claimed that the two guerrilla fighters involved in the sacrificial action against the Interior Ministry last Sunday in Ankara had been trained in northern Syria and had entered Turkey from there via the highly secured border. The authorities and defence forces of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) as well as the PKK rejected this account as a "lie" and spoke of a constructed pretext to launch the war of aggression against northern and eastern Syria that Turkey had been planning for a long time. On Wednesday, the region of north-eastern Syria was targeted by heavy Turkish drone attacks. In the days before, the air force of Turkey carried out several waves of attacks in Southern Kurdistan (Kurdistan Region of Iraq, KRI).