SIKÊNIYÊ, Iraq — Volunteers continue to clear rubble by hand at the site of a hospital flattened by Turkish airstrikes.
In the early afternoon on Tuesday, Turkish aircraft targeted a hospital in the village of Sikêniyê on the southern side of the Shengal mountain range with a series of airstrikes.
The hospital was run by volunteers in the Shengal Resistance Unit (Yekîneyên Berxwedana Şengalê, YBŞ) and served the local community, most recently helping to combat the coronavirus pandemic.
As of Wednesday, 8 people — 7 Yezidis and 1 Arab — are confirmed killed in the attack. Of those killed, four were medical personal and four were members of the YBŞ, including the Arab.
Those killed in the Turkish airstrike are:
- Sedo Ilyas Resho — Medical Worker
- Haji Khidir — Medical Worker
- Muhlise Sidar — Medical Worker
- Ali Resho Khidir — Medical Worker
- Hemîd Sadun (Qiran Siba) — YBŞ Member
- Xidir Şeref (Pir Xidir) — YBŞ Member
- Rami El Salim (Ronî) — YBŞ Member
- Meytem Xidir Xelef (Serhed Zemar) — YBŞ Member
Four other medical workers were wounded in the airstrikes.
“Four were civilians and four were YBŞ members,” wrote former director of humanitarian organization Yazda Matthew Barber via Twitter. “The Arab was among the latter; it must be remembered that the YBŞ created an inclusive security framework for the local community (going back at least five years) and helped organize local Arabs into units that could fight IS.”
“None of those massacred were terrorists,” he continued. “The YBŞ is a local PKK affiliate, yet clearly not a Kurdish nationalist group. Its members in Sinjar have a role more akin to local police. They started out fighting IS and ended up providing education on hygiene & COVID safety.”
On Monday, Turkey assassinated Yezidi politician and YBŞ official Saeed Hasan Saeed with a drone strike on his vehicle while he was traveling to meet with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi who was visiting the region at the time.