Turkish drone strike kills 2 Kurdish local officials and their driver in north Syria, officials say


Beirut (AP) — A Turkish drone attack killed two Kurdish local officials and their driver in northeast Syria on Tuesday in the latest such strike in the war-torn country, officials said, as talks on Syria’s conflict began in Kazakhstan.

The Kurdish-led authority in northeast Syria said Tuesday’s strike hit a car near the town of Qamishli, killing the co-chairperson of the town’s council, Yusra Darwish, and her deputy, Liman Shweish, as well as their driver. An additional local officials was wounded in the attack.

The attack is the latest in a series of such strikes by Turkey’s military that has been targeting Kurdish officials and fighters in northeast Syria for months. Turkey says the main Syrian Kurdish militia is allied to an outlawed Kurdish group that has led an insurgency against Turkey since 1984. That conflict with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, PKK, has killed tens of thousands of people.

The authority said in a statement that the four were visiting institutions run by the Kurdish-led Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria when they came under drone attack while on the road outside Qamishli.

Also Tuesday, a two-day round of talks aimed at resolving the broader conflict in Syria opened in the Kazakh capital, Astana, among officials from Russia, Iran, Turkey and Syria.

The meeting follows an improvement in relations between Syria and Arab countries, which have backed the opposition since the country’s conflict began in March 2011. The deadly conflict has killed half a million people and displaced half the country’s pre-war population of 23 million.

In May, President Bashar Assad attended the Arab Summit in Saudi Arabia after Syria’s membership was reinstated 12 years after it was suspended.

Meanwhile, attempts at reconciliation between Syria and Turkey, which has troops in Syria and backs opposition fighters, have been slow.

Syria’s Assistant Foreign Minister Ayman Sousan was quoted by state media as saying that “any active results” that come out of the meetings in Astana should be based on Turkey agreeing to withdraw its troops from Syria in accordance with a “clear timeline.”

Share post:



For Kuwait’s new emir, Saudi ties are seen as key

Kuwait (Reuters) - Sheikh Meshal al-Ahmad al-Sabah was named...

Pope Francis deplores Israeli killings of civilians at Gaza church

Vatican City (Reuters) - Pope Francis on Sunday again...

Palestinians must find new path from Israeli rule after war, top official says

Ramallah (Reuters) - Immediately after Israel's war in Gaza...

Israel says it struck Hezbollah sites after attacks from Lebanon

Jerusalem/Beirut (Reuters) - Israel said on Sunday it had...