By Esref Musa
People who lost their young family members to a roadside bomb planted by YPG/PKK terrorists in Afrin, Syria, near Turkey’s southern border, explained both the horror of the attack and the terror group then trying to blame the attack on Turkey.
YPG/PKK terrorists in the Afrin region had booby-trapped the village road to block civilians from leaving the village of Kurayriyah. On March 5, 36 people escaped from a vehicle blasted by a roadside bomb but then when trying to cross the road, were hit by yet another bomb lying in wait. The explosion killed two children, including a 3-month-old baby.
Though Turkish military drones captured the planting of the bomb as well as the moment it exploded, the terrorist group tried to claim the incident was a Turkish Armed Forces attack and launched a social media smear campaign against Turkey.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency, the victims’ family members said the children were killed by a mine planted by the terrorist group targeting civilians.
Fatma Hussein, the mother of the slain children, said: "They had been killing us for six years before we said a word against them. By moving and hiding from place to place, I kept my children from being forcibly recruited by the terror group. But finally they killed my children with their weapons."
Hussein said the YPG/PKK terrorists planted mines near their house, explaining: "They targeted us. There are many similar incidents. My cousin in Jinderes [in southwestern Afrin] lost his life by stepping on a mine, but the YPG/PKK claimed that he had been killed by the Turkish military.
"The terrorist group was launching rocket attacks close to our house. I would always say that they should keep away, but they said, ‘Don’t get in our way’.”
Driven out by harassment
Hussein said that since the terrorists wouldn’t stop harassing civilians, they decided to leave the village.
While trying to flee in a flat-bed truck, she recounted, “There was an explosion close to the house. I tried to escape from the truck while holding my children’s hands.”
After the explosion, she continued, she saw that the bomb had taken one of her children’s hands, and another had lost his leg.
Fuad al Gazi, who was driving the truck that hit the roadside bomb, said that there were 36 people in the truck. “Most of them were women and children, and the first mine exploded 50 meters after we started driving,” he said.
“The [terrorist] group later took us to the hospital. At the hospital the [terrorist] group started spreading propaganda that Turkish planes had caused our condition,” he added.
Al Gazi added that the terrorist group targeted civilians by laying mines near their houses.
“The Turkish army didn’t hurt any civilians. They [Turkish army and Free Syrian Army] entered our village and didn’t harm anyone,” he said.
Al Gazi said that the terrorist group posted footage of civilians killed by the roadside bomb online, spreading the lie that the Turkish military were responsible for the deaths.
Al Gazi said the terrorist YPG/PKK were the ones responsible for the killings.
Mines near civilian houses
Jamal al Gazi, who lost his siblings in the explosion, said that the terrorist group recently stepped up pressure on villagers, which led to them trying to flee to another village.
Al Gazi said that all 36 people in the truck were civilians, mostly women and children.
Al Gazi stated that he lost his siblings in the second mine blast while they were trying to reach another village.
“Who would plant mines 100 meters from houses where civilians would cross?” he said.
Al Gazi said that the terrorist group rationalized their deliberate targeting of civilians by claiming that the civilians were working with the Free Syrian Army.