Five people were killed and at least 21 people were injured, by Turkey bombing recently targeted several areas in the districts of Shingal (Sinjar) and Makhmur in Nineveh, which sparked a wave of protests and demonstrations.
The Turkish bombardment began at 10:00 pm on Tuesday, February 1, 2022 and continued until 3:00 am, more than one source told KirkukNow.
According to KirkukNow follow-up, the death toll from the Turkish raids has reached five, three of whom were civilians, in addition to wounding 21 others, most of them in Makhmur.
Khudida Elias, head of the Autonomous Administration Council in the Sinuny sub-district, northwest of Shingal, told KirkukNow, " Bari region was among the areas targeted in the Turkish bombing, an area inhabited by civilians, and the bombing resulted in the death of three Arab civilians from West Kurdistan (East of Syria). They came to work in Shingal, and another was injured."
the bombing resulted in the death of three Arab civilians from West Kurdistan
Anadolu News Agency of the Turkish government published that the Turkish military operation, dubbed "Winter Falcon", was targeting the guerillas of Shingal Resistance Units YBSh (Yabsha), and that "all measures have been taken so that the operations do not harm civilians and the environment."
However, Yabsha stressed in a statement that their forces did not suffer any losses in the bombing that targeted Shingal and that "three civilians who were digging water wells were martyred and another person was wounded."
Yabsha and several other forces close to the Kurdistan Workers' Party PKK were founded and stationed in Shingal and its outskirts since 2014, after that the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant ISIL attacked Ninewa province, targeted the vulnerable Ezidi community, committing atrocities mounted to genocide, and took over large swathes of Iraq.
There are more than eight different armed groups within the borders of Shingal district, including the pro-Iran Shiite paramilitary PMF, Ezidikhan Asayish (security), Yabsha, the local police, the federal police, the Iraqi army, the Ezidkhan Peshmerga and the KRG Peshmerga forces stationed in A religious shrine.
According to the Shingal agreement concluded between the Iraqi federal government and the Kurdistan Regional Government KRG in October 2020 to reorganize the administrative, security and service file in the Shingal district, the local police, the intelligence service and the National Security Service, in coordination with the security forces of the KRG will be assigned to manage the security file of Shingal while the armed forces of the federal government will be deployed in the outskirts, including pro-Iran and pro-PKK groups.
Several areas in Shingal, in addition to Makhmour camp, have witnessed two days of protests and demonstrations denouncing the Turkish bombing. On Thursday, February 3, a demonstration was held in the Khana Sur area of Shingal.
Farhan Saleh, a teacher at Balistan Primary School in Shingal district, said that he gathered with his school students to condemn the Turkish attacks. "Our protest is to condemn the continued bombing and killing of citizens while students are taking final exams in fear and anxiety, so we call on all parties to take a stand."
The Turkish army had previously launched dozens of raids in different areas of Shingal, targeting pro-PKK groups.
Elias says recent bombing targeted 20 locations, including the headquarters of Yabshah and the headquarters of the 80th Regiment of the PMF.
"The citizens are upset. Yesterday, the Turkish bombing was condemned in Khana Sur, so we assure Turkey that their attacks will not prevent us from continuing the struggle."
The Autonomous Administration Council in Sinjar was formed years ago by several Ezidi, Arab and other components, and it is considered affiliated to PKK. The council is currently managing judicial affairs though not recognized by the federal government and the KRG.
Youssef Kara, the co-chair of the People’s Assembly in Makhmour camp, a local council affiliated to PKK, told KirkukNow, said, “The bombing was carried out by F-16 planes, unfortunately two people were martyred and more than 20 others were wounded, the wounded were transported to Qayyarah Hospitals, Mosul and other areas for treatment.”
A statement by the Core Protection Forces in Makhmour camp - which is one of the forces close to the Kurdistan Workers Party and is responsible for protecting the camp - indicated that two of its members were killed in the Turkish bombing.
The camp is located in Makhmour district (southeast of Mosul), and is inhabited by at least 12,000 Kurds from Turkey who have been displaced from their areas in Turkey since the 1990s due to the military operations of the Turkish army. The camp is officially registered by the Iraqi government and the United Nations.
what hurts us most is the silence and indifference of the authorities and parties
"This is not the first time that Turkey bombs the camp, but what hurts us most is the silence and indifference of the authorities and parties," Kara added.
The Iraqi government's Security Media Cell condemned in a statement on Wednesday, February 2, the violation of Iraqi airspace by Turkey to bomb Makhmur and Shingal. The statement indicated Iraq's readiness to coordinate and maintain stability in the common borders between the two countries.
Both Shingal and Makhmur are among the disputed territories in Nineveh Province and are administratively under the federal government where Iraqi military security forces are deployed.