ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — A four-year-old child lost his leg in a suspected Turkish attack on the Kurdish town of Kobane in northern Syria on Saturday.
The attack targeted around 15 villages in the countryside of Kobane, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), killing one and wounding twelve others, including women and children.
A photo of the four year old Abdou Mustafa Hanifi, who lost a leg in the attack on the village of Qarmog, broke the internet on Saturday with the Kurdish led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) media head Farhad Shami calling out Turkey as responsible.
Turkey is yet to release a statement on the attack, however an unofficial source tracking the Turkish military operations on Saturday confirmed attacks on Kobane and the village of Qarmog, claiming that the Turkish artillery units struck Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) targets.
Video footage published by the SDF affiliated Hawar News Agency (ANHA) on Saturday showed the moment of the attack on Qarmog village, from which at least three women were injured and were carried to a car close by.
Ankara often targets north and north and east Syria (Rojava), killing and injuring civilians and security forces.
It has conducted three military operations in northern Syria since 2016, two of them against Kurdish fighters whom it considers a branch of the PKK and a threat to its national security.
Kobane was the scene of one of the fiercest battles against the militants of the Islamic State in 2014 when the terrorist group took over large swathes of territory both in Iraq and Syria. The battle against ISIS in Kobane was led by the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG). The Kurds have been in charge of the city but Turkey sees the YPG and the SDF as a threat.
This is not the first time children fall victims of Turkish aggression in Syria. In October 2019, footage of a child screaming in agony of his burn raised questions about Turkey using chemical weapons in assaulting Kurds in Syria.
At least one person was injured in a suspected Turkish attack in Hasaka’s Zirgan district last week.
At least three people, including a mother and a child, were killed while several others were wounded when Turkish forces bombed Zirgan and Tel Tamer districts in Hasaka late December, and four other people died in Turkish shelling in Zirgan district on December 21.
According to data published by the SDF on Thursday, over 700 civilians were kidnapped and 134 were injured in Turkish attacks in 2021.
Rojava saw 47 Turkish ground attacks and incursion attempts, as well as 89 drone offensives, according to the SDF.
Fifty-eight villages and three districts were the targets of direct bombardment.