U.S. Ambassador to U.N.: Targeting civilians in Makhmour Refugee Camp would be a violation of international and humanitarian law

MAKHMOUR, Iraq — After Turkish air strikes targeted Makhmour Refugee Camp in Iraq, which resulted in the loss of at least three lives, the U.S. Consulate in Erbil shared a statement by U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas who said that targeting civilians in Makhmour Camp would be a violation of international and humanitarian law.

Thomas also expressed concern about the violence near the camp and called for the rights of refugees to be respected.

Across the Syrian border in Zalin (Qamishli), thousands of people demonstrated on Thursday to denounce the Turkish military campaign in Iraq.

Representatives of the Syriac Union Party (SUP) and the Beth Nahrin National Council (MUB) joined the demonstration against the Turkish campaign, which has forced thousands of Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian families from their villages in Nohadra (Duhok) in northern Iraq.

The demonstrators called for an end to the displacement, which some said echoed the massacres and forced displacement of the Ottoman Empire in 1915.


The Turkish Army, which has been conducting military operations in the Metina area and have announced plans to build a large military base there.

Since the summer of 2020, Turkey has engaged in a cross-border military operation ostensibly targeting the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) which has been in armed conflict with the Turkish state since the 1980s. However, Turkish drone and air strikes have repeatedly targeted areas without a PKK presence, according to locals.

Human Rights Watch criticized Turkey for failing to take adequate measures to minimize civilian casualties after an air strike on 25 June injured six civilians and damaged a popular tourist town in Sulaymaniyah Province.

Thousands of civilians have been displaced across norther Iraq by the ongoing Turkish operations.