Turkish drone kills two top officials in northeast Syria, says Kurdish counterterrorism unit
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – A Turkish drone strike on Tuesday hit a People’s Protection Units (YPG) vehicle in Syria’s northeastern city of Qamishli, killing two local officials, the Kurdistan Region's Directorate General of Counter Terrorism announced.
The strike hit the vehicle at 11:20 a.m. local time between Bandar and Tal Sh’ir villages in Qamishli in northeastern Syria, known among Kurds as Rojava, the statement added.
The Democratic Union Party (PYD) of Rojava in a tweet confirmed that the co-chair of the Qamishlo canton, Yousra Darwish, was killed in a Turkish drone strike east of Qamishlo. Darwish's deputy Kabi Shamoun, known by his nom de guerre Furat, was also killed in the attack. Another militant accompanying the senior officials was injured in the attack.
Kurdistan Workers’ Party-affiliated (PKK) media has similarly confirmed the attack, saying its occupants were wounded.
Turkey has not claimed responsibility for the attack.
Moreover, Peoples' Democratic Party in a tweet condemned the attack.
We condemn the bomb attack targeting Yusra Derwêş, Kamishlo Canton Co-Chair, and those accompanying her, the latest in a series of assassinations aimed at the will of the people of #Rojava. We call on the international community to take immediate action & end these assassinations pic.twitter.com/nEoiYIprUg— HDP English (@HDPenglish) June 20, 2023
Ankara sees the YPG as a Syrian offshoot of the PKK, against which it has engaged in several military campaigns since the mid-1980s. The long-standing conflict has resulted in tens of thousands of deaths from both sides.
Bolstered by its advanced drone industry, Ankara has increased its aerial campaign against the suspected PKK targets in both Iraq and Syria.
Kurdistan Region officials have regularly called on the warring sides to take their fights away from the mountainous areas of Iraq’s Kurdish region.