The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights

8 days of Operation “Peace Spring”: Turkey controls 68 areas, “Ras al-Ain” under siege, and 416 dead among the SDF, Turkish forces and Turkish-backed factions

October 2019

Northern Syria is still witnessing several developments, to coincide with 8 days of the Turkish military operation, the so-called “Peace Spring”, as the past few days have seen a number of developments, with the on-going shelling and intense fighting between the Syrian democratic forces and its military councils on one hand and the Turkish forces and Turkish-backed factions on the other hand. Regime forces has completed its deployment on the axes of “Ain Issa” northern of Raqqa, while sources of the “Syrian Observatory” confirmed the invalidity of what regime’s media said about controlling the military-class airport and the band 17 north of Raqqa city. The sources said that regime forces convoys only gather at Tabqa airport before moving to the deployment sites agreed with the SDF, especially in the perimeter and countryside of the town of Ain Issa.

According to what the sources of the SOHR observed, regime forces entered Ain al-Arab (Kobani) yesterday evening, where it stationed on three locations at the border with Turkey, namely; “Talet Kaniye” in the east, “al-Baladeya” in the west and “al-Bawaba” at the center of the city. The SOHR also knew that regime forces were deployed in Al-Managir area in the countryside of Tal Tamr.

Several fronts in East Euphrates are witnessing fierce clashes between the Turkish Forces and the factions loyal to them against the Syria Democratic Forces accompanied by targeting and intensive shelling, while violent clashes still on-going between the Turkish forces and the factions loyal to them on the one hand and the Syrian Democratic Forces and its military councils on the other hand, resulting in a high number of deaths on both sides, in addition to the high number of civilian casualties and the increasing number of displaced. Since the start of the fighting, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has been following the rapid developments on all fronts of the battle, in addition to the internal displacement or martyrs caused by indiscriminate Turkish shells that have hit civilians throughout northern Syria.

300 thousand civilians displaced by Turkish operations and 72 civilian casualties in 8 days

Since the early hours of Wednesday morning, October 9, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has monitored the displacement of civilians from different parts of the Euphrates region, fleeing the Turkish military operation in the area. According to the statistics of the “Observatory”, the number of displaced exceeded 300 thousand civilians displaced from their towns, cities and villages, where the movement of civilians continues from their areas in Tal Abyad, Ras al-Ain, Darbasiyah, Ain Al Arab, Ain Issa and other areas east of the Euphrates at the border with Turkey. According to Syrian Observatory statistics Human rights, the number of displaced people exceeded 300 thousand civilians toward the depth of the region, amid the difficult humanitarian situation in the region due to the huge numbers of displaced persons.

Over the course of a week of the Turkish military operation known as the “”Peace Spring,” 72 civilians fall victim to the indiscriminate shelling and battles waged by Turkey on northern Syria. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the number of civilians killed since the beginning of the Turkish military operation has risen to 72, including 21 children, a party official and two citizens due to being shot dead and field execution by Turkish-backed factions on the highway south of Tel Abyad and areas north of Ain Issa. In addition, 19 were killed by Turkish airstrikes targeting the city of Ras al-Ain and its environs. A child was killed in the shelling on the perimeter and the countryside of Ras al-Ain area in Hasakah countryside, 4 killed by Turkish air strikes on the village of Al-Bajiya in Tal Abyad area, 3 by sniper in Tal Abyad, a girl in shelling targeting al-Qahtaniya countryside, and a man by a Turkish sniper in the city Al-Derbasiyah. Also, a woman was killed by a Turkish sniper in al-Qamishli city, a man due to Turkish missile shelling on the outskirts of “Qasr Deeb” village in al-Malikiyah countryside. In terms of targeting civilians, Turkish warplanes bombed a humanitarian support convoy in Ras al-Ain, which arrived from Tel Tamr, which included foreign and local journalists, killing 19 people, 15 of them were civilians, including a female citizen and 2 local reporters. In addition, 2 civilians were killed in bombing by the Turkish-backed factions on the village of Alvarat north of the city of Manbij, and a girl as a result of rocket shelling by Turkish forces on one of the villages of “Ain Issa” north of Raqqa.

Turkey controls 68 areas, “Ras al-Ain” under siege and the death toll rises between both sides

Over the course of 8 days, the Syrian Observatory monitored the progress of Turkish forces and their affiliated factions with intensive air and ground cover in at least 68 districts of Tal Abyad and Ras al-Ain districts, where Turkish forces extended their control over the city of Tal Abyad, as well as towns and villages of Selouk, Mazra’at Al-Hammadi, Abu Qabr, Mazra’at al-Massihi, Hamida, Al-Mahdah, Dadat, Al-Yabsah, Al-Mushrifah, Tel-Fender, Bir-Asheq, Al-Tuwaraziyah, Zakah, Huwairan, Al-Wasta, Al-Ghajer, Shokan, Al-Khaldia, Al-Arida, Nabhan, Um Al-Garn, Ghazil, Al-Hawi, Tabbin, Al-Suwayn, Jamous Filo, Al-Zaidi, Al-Droubiyah, Ain Al-Arous, Tel Antar, Al-Badi, Jassem Al-Ali in Tal Abyad. Turkey also now controls Mabrouka town, and the villages of Kantari, Wadha, Twigel, Alouk, Keshtu, Aksas, Tal Khanzeer, Al Azizia, Baloja, Abu Al-Saoun, Hweish Al-Nasser, Al-Naim, Sahaleya, Libya, Tal Al-Banat, Kajo, Al-Mada’in and Nahih in Ras al-Ain. In addition, Turkey now controls 17 villages and areas within the area between Tal Tamr and Ras al-Ain, and the area between the countryside of Tal Abyad and Ain Issa. Meanwhile, Ras al-Ain is now completely besieged, and Turkish forces and their factions have taken control of nearly half of the city.

As a result of the continuous battels, the death toll among the Syria Democratic Forces, military councils and internal security forces since the start of the Turkish military operation on Wednesday afternoon have risen to 224, while the number of deaths among Syrian factions loyal to Ankara and the pro-Turkey cells killed in the attacks and clashes with the SDF during the same period reached 183, including 21 of the cells loyal to Ankara killed in clashes with the SDF, in addition to 9 Turkish soldiers were killed during the battels, amid information about more dead Turks on the Turkish-Syrian border, and the number of those killed is likely to rise due to the high number of wounded, some of them in dangerous situations.