Turkish occupation renews shelling of North Syrian villages, continue human rights abuses in occupied areas of Tel Abyad

TEL ABYAD, Syria / Tel Rifaat, Syria – The Turkish and Syrian National Army (SNA) forces stationed in Tal Muhammed, west of Abu Rasayn, continue to target the nearby villages of Tal al-Ward and Rabi’at with artillery shelling.

The SNA is a collection of militias, including several espousing Islamist ideologies, formed and funded by Turkey.

Meanwhile, in the vicinity of Ayn Issa, the villages of Al-Hoshan and Al-Khaldia were also subjected to artillery shelling by Turkey forces stationed south of Tel Abyad.

Confrontations between the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the Turkish-backed SNA took place in the village of Khirbet Karam, north of Ayn Issa, resulting in the deaths of two members of the SNA.

Turkey and the SNA invaded northern Syria in October 2019 and continue to occupy Tel Abyad, Rish Ayno, and the surrounding countryside. Despite Turkish claims of creating a “safe zone”, the regions under their control continue to exist is a state of lawlessness. The Turkish invasion displaced an estimated 300,000 civilians.

Recently, the Turkish occupation forces imposed Turkish language lessons on the local population. Mandatory veils were also imposed on the women in the occupied regions.

It has been reported by sources in the occupied areas that shops of displaced people are being rented by SNA groups to re-settled people from other parts of Syria. The rental of abandoned property, looting of goods and property, and the abduction and ransoming of locals have become commonplace in the areas occupied by the SNA.

Near Tel Rifaat, in the northern Aleppo countryside, Turkish artillery shelling targeted the village of Sogankei and the surrounding area.

Fierce confrontations between Turkish-backed groups and the People’s Protection Units (YPG) also took place southwest of Marea, north of Aleppo.