Early on April 14, a suspected Turkish drone strike killed a commander of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) near the Nusaybin border crossing in Syria’s northeastern region.
The crossing is located in the northern outskirts of the town of al-Qamishli in the northern al-Hasakah countryside, where Syrian government forces maintain a fairly large presence. Both Russia and the United States also have bases near the town.
According to the Hawar News Agency, which is linked to the SDF, the drone strike hit a vehicle on the road leading to Nusaybin.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a pro-opposition monitoring group based in Long, said that a commander of the SDF was killed and one of his guards was wounded in the strike. Other new sources identified the slain commander as Baran, without providing any details about his position within the group.
Turkish combat drones targeted dozens of fighters and commanders of the SDF and its affiliates in northeastern Syria and northern Iraq over the last few years.
Exactly a week earlier, a drone strike hit the convoy of the SDF’s Commander-in-Chief, Ferhat Abdi Şahin, in Iraq’s autonomous Kurdish region. Three U.S. service members were in the convoy at the time of the attack. Şahin, who is more known by his nom de guerre Mazloum Abdi, survived the attack, which didn’t result in any losses. Western officials believe that the strike was carried out by Turkey.
Ankara appears to be planning to escalate its operations against the SDF once again, just a few months after it halted plans to launch a new ground invasion into northeastern Syria.