SOHR exclusive | Nearly 100 Turkish soldiers and officers killed and wounded in 24 attacks since early 2021 • The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights

SOHR exclusive | Nearly 100 Turkish soldiers and officers killed and wounded in 24 attacks since early 2021

Unlike the calls and press statements by the Turkish president “Recep Tayyip Erdogan” regarding Turkey’s support of Syrian civilians throughout Syria, the Turkish intervention in Syria aims only for achieving Erdogan’s personal and narrow interests. Accordingly, the Turkish forces’ presence in Syrian territory has been met with fierce resistance by opposing powers through attempts to inflect the heavies human and material losses on the Turks. It is worth noting that the Kurdish forces in Aleppo countryside, the jihadi organization of “Ansar Abu Bakr al-Siddiq” in the “de-escalation zone”, Idlib in particular, and Syria Democratic Forces (SDF) are the major power resisting the presence of Turkish forces in Syria.

 

From early January 2021 to mid-October, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights documented over 24 attacks on Turkish forces in Syria, including IED and landmine explosions, attacks with guided and short-range missiles and gunfire. These attacks left 21 Turkish soldiers and officers dead and over 73 others injured.

 

The attacks against Turkish forces during this period, from January 2021 to mid-October, were distributed as follows:

 

  • Kurdish forces and affiliated cells in north and east Aleppo countryside: 13 attacks which left 11 Turkish soldiers dead and 39 others injured.

 

  • “Ansar Abu Bakr al-Siddiq” Battalion in Idlib province: seven attacks which left eight Turkish soldiers dead and 18 others injured.

 

  • SDF in al-Hasakah and al-Raqqah: four attacks which left two Turkish soldiers dead and 16 others injured.

 

Further details of the circumstances of attacks agains Turkish forces in Syria in 2021 could be summarised as follows:

 

  • February 3: a Turkish sergeant died affected by the injury he sustained in an armed attack a few days earlier on a Turkish post in Abu al-Zubair area in the western countryside of Idlib. The jihadi battalion of “Ansar Abu Bakr al-Siddiq” claimed responsibility of the attack.

 

  • February 4: a Turkish officer who was in charge of the engineering and demining section in the Turkish army was killed in al-Bab city in the eastern countryside of Aleppo, while he was attempting to dismantle an IED at the entrance of al-Hamza Division’s headquarters on the old agricultural road.

 

  • March 19: a Turkish officer was killed in clashes and exchange of bombardment between SDF on one hand, and Turkish forces and their proxy factions on the other, on the frontlines of Sayda village in Ain Issa countryside in al-Raqqah province.

 

  • April 7: two Turkish soldiers were killed in bombardment by Kurdish forces on Turkish military posts in the northern countryside of Aleppo.

 

  • May 10: a Turkish soldier was killed in an IED explosion on the road between Kafr Lusin and Bab al-Hawa crossing on the Syria-Turkey border in the north of Idlib, as the explosion targeted a Turkish military convoy of seven vehicles. “Ansar Abu Bakr al-Siddiq” Battalion claimed responsibility of the attack.

 

  • June 3: a Turkish soldier was killed in an attack by Kurdish forces on Bur Hayder frontline in the northern countryside of Aleppo.

 

  • July 24: three Turkish soldiers were killed in an attack by Kurdish forces on their military vehicle on Hazawan frontline in the eastern countryside of Aleppo.

 

  • August 20: a Turkish soldier was killed in an IED attack by SDF fighters, which targeted a military vehicle near Aliyah in Ras al-Ain

 

  • September 7: a Turkish soldier was killed in rocket fire by Kurdish forces on the Turkish base in al-Yashili village in al-Bab countryside in north-eastern Aleppo.

 

  • September 10: three Turkish soldiers were killed in an IED explosion on the road between Idlib and Binnish. “Ansar Abu Bakr al-Siddiq” Battalion claimed responsibility of the attack.

 

  • October 3: a Turkish soldier was killed in an armed attack on a Turkish pickup in northern Areha. “Ansar Abu Bakr al-Siddiq” Battalion claimed responsibility of the attack.

 

  • October 7: a Turkish soldier was killed in an armed attack by Afrin Liberation Forces on their car in Suways area in the northern countryside of Aleppo.

 

  • October 10: two Turkish soldiers of the special task forces died of the wounds they sustained in the attack by Afrin Liberation Forces on their car on the road to Sandaf, near Mare’ city in the northern countryside of Aleppo.

 

  • October 15: Two Turkish soldiers were killed in an IED explosion near Kafreya junction in Maarrat Misrin in Idlib countryside. “Ansar Abu Bakr al-Siddiq” Battalion claimed responsibility of the attack.
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