Child rapist and killer summarily executed in northern Syria

Mustafa Salamah, who murdered the Iraqi child Yasin al-Mahmoud was reportedly summarily executed by armed men as he was transferred to another police unit.
Turkish-backed fighters take part in a training at a military barracks, north of the Syrian town of Manbij on 6 March (Photo: AFP)
Turkish-backed fighters take part in a training at a military barracks, north of the Syrian town of Manbij on 6 March (Photo: AFP)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – A member of Sham Falcons Brigades, was summarily executed by Turkish-backed armed factions, after he on Wednesday murdered and raped the Iraqi child in Turkish-occupied Serekaniye (Ras al-Ain), the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) war monitor reports on Thursday.

There were conflicting reports that the child was between 8 and 10 years old.

Levant 24 reported on Thursday that “according to activists, Mustafa Salamah, man who murdered little (Iraqi child) Yasin al-Mahmoud was executed as he was transferred from the military police to the civilian police in Ras al-Ain.”

The SOHR report said that Mustafa Salama, a member of the Turkish-backed Sham Falcons Brigades faction on Wednesday “abducted and sexually and physically assaulted an Iraqi child, Yasin Al-Mahmoud, killing him in cold blood and dumping him in front of his house.”

“Photographs, a copy of which, were obtained by SOHR show the signs of torture and beating on the body of the child Yassin.”

Activists in northern Syria expressed outrage and demanded that the perpetrator be arrested and brought to a fair trial. Moreover, there were protests in Serekaniye calling to hold Salama accountable.

“We, SOHR, as a human rights institution, condemn this crime and the escalation of rape cases across, and demand that child rapists (...) be held accountable and brought to a fair trial,” SOHR said.

Read More: Kurdish civilians are being doubly victimized by Turkish-backed groups in Syria: UN report

The latest report by the United Nations Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria released on Wednesday also confirmed Turkish-backed factions have been involved in sexual violence against civilians.

The UN Commission said there are “new credible accounts were also gathered from both male and female survivors, including from minors, of beatings and other forms of torture by members of the Syrian National Army, including rape and other forms of sexual violence that took place in makeshift detention facilities between 2018–2021.”

Turkey and its Syrian proxies have occupied the northwestern Syrian Kurdish enclave of Afrin since March 2018. They have also occupied northeast Syria's Serekaniye and Tal Abyad since October 2019. 

Read More: 117 civilians arrested in Afrin, Serekaniye

They have been accused of a myriad of human rights abuses against civilians and the local population.

The incident proved that many ISIS members had joined Turkish-backed groups, Bassam al-Ahmad, executive director for the Syrians for Truth and Justice (STJ), told Kurdistan 24. 

Salami was reportedly an ISIS member, who was previously in jail for five years and later joined the Turkish-backed group.

He also said that the incident shows there is no effective justice system in areas under Turkish control.

"This crime should have been punished by an independent court and commission. But as with many other incidents, there was no justice."