Some five million people in northern Syria suffered more than 580 air and ground attacks by the Turkish armed forces between 5 and 9 October, the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) officials have announced.
Turkey’s attacks killed 44 people, including two children, and wounded 55 others in the scope of five days, the region’s Kurdish-led administration said.
In the five days of attacks, Turkish armed forces destroyed 11 power plants, two clinics, 48 educational institutions, and a centre where AANES security forces receive training for anti-drug operations.
The AANES is dependent on international aid “in order to ensure stability in the region, combat the causes of emigration and make a prospect for peace in Syria possible”, a representative for the administration said.
The intense wave of recent attacks started “under false pretexts”, he continued. Turkey announced its intention to target infrastructure in the region following an attack on 1 October on the main police headquarters in Ankara, arguing the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants who carried out the attack had travelled to the Turkish capital from Kurdish-held northern Syria.
AANES officials have stated various times that the region had no connection to the attack, while Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan declared all infrastructure in the region to be “legitimate targets”.
Turkey’s attacks undermined the AANES’ stability and capability to defend the region and “protect our democratic project from the Islamic State (ISIS) and other actors”, the administration said.
Among the affected resources are 17 key oil sites, including the Suwaydiya power plant that provides much of the region’s energy as well as bottled gas used for cooking, and 11 power plants in the vicinity of al-Hasakah (Hesekê).
The attacks on Suwaydiya power plant have reportedly affected 20 hospitals and 35 smaller healthcare centres.
The Alouk water station was affected in the attacks, depriving al-Hasakah residents of water. The total number of water facilities and pumping stations disabled by attacks in the region is 18.
Three industrial facilities in the region were destroyed.
Turkey’s attacks have rendered two hospitals unusable and affected education services for 8,000 children in 48 institutions. Two children were killed in attacks on schools, while one girl lost her legs.
A total of 104 elements of civilian infrastructure were put out of service in the five days of attacks.
Turkish attacks are “a threat to our shared success in the fight against ISIS, which we are leading together with the international anti-ISIS coalition”, the administration said, calling for “a public, impartial and transparent investigation into Turkey’s practices towards our region by specialized international committees”.
A civilian-led tally of the same period reports 172 sites targeted in the region, according to the monitoring department of the North Press Agency. The affected area includes Qamishli, Aleppo, Dêrik, Ain Issa, Manbij and Kobane.
According to the AANES Water Department, output in the region has fallen by 50 percent.