IED attack injures civilians in Syria’s Manbij
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – A local military council in the northern Syrian city of Manbij said in a statement on Tuesday that an improvised explosive device (IED) earlier that day targeted a civilian vehicle, wounding several.
“Around 12 Pm, a civilian car targeted by terrorist cells trying to disturb the security and stability in the town of Manbij” planted “a bomb on a civilian car,” the Manbij Military Council (MMC) said in a statement.
As a result, said the group, at least eight civilians were injured.
The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said in a report that the explosion was caused by an IED that had been placed under a car owned by a doctor near the city’s central pharmacy. The SOHR said that one person was killed and another four were injured.
As is the case with such incidents, early casualty numbers often conflict with each other.
The human rights watchdog claimed that the doctor had previously been threatened by nearby Islamic State cells for allegedly refusing to pay them the compulsory Islamic tax known as the zakat.
Although the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the US-led Coalition announced the Islamic State’s territorial defeat in Syria on March 23, 2019, in Baghouz, the terror group’s sleeper cell attacks persist in areas liberated from their brutal rule.
The MMC, supported by the SDF, liberated Manbij with US support in 2016 in one of the bloodiest campaigns Syria has witnessed against the extremist group.
However, US forces left the town and other border regions in northern Syria in October 2019 after Turkey targeted the SDF-held border towns of Tal Abyad and Ras al-Ain (Serekaniye).
In a deal Moscow brokered, the SDF invited Syrian forces to prevent a Turkish expansion, but there was no political agreement on the future of the SDF-held northeast. As a result, there are now Syrian troops based on the outskirts of Manbij.
MMC officials have reported limited bombings in the area which it says were carried out by Islamic State sleeper cells over the past year.
The Syria-based Rojava Information Center (RIC) wrote in its monthly report released on Oct. 8 that it had not documented any Islamic State sleeper cell attacks in Manbij, with the majority being carried out in Deir al-Zor and additional some incidents in Raqqa and Hasakah.
However, MMC spokesperson Shervan Derwish has survived several assassinations attempts in the last three years, including the last one in June.
According to the RIC, the assassination attempt “bore the hallmarks of attacks launched by agents linked to the Turkish intelligence services.”
Editing by John J. Catherine