A Kurdish political leader was among nine civilians “executed” by Turkish-backed fighters in Syria on Saturday, a Syrian human rights group said.
Hevrin Khalaf, 35, the secretary-general of the pro-Kurdish Future Syria Party, and her driver, were among the victims, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
“The nine civilians were executed at different moments south of the town of Tal Abyad,” the Observatory said.
The political arm of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces said in a statement that Khalaf was “taken out of her car during a Turkish-backed attack and executed by Turkish-backed mercenary factions.”
“This is a clear evidence that the Turkish state is continuing its criminal policy towards unarmed civilians,” they added.
Two videos circulating on social media, which have been verified by the Observatory, are purported to show some of Saturday’s executions.At least 38 civilians in Syria have been killed since Turkey and its allied forces began their incursion on Wednesday, according to the Observatory.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan forged ahead with the attacks after President Trump last Sunday removed US troops from the area.
The move had led to worldwide condemnation from a bipartisan number of congressional lawmakers for abandoning the US-allied SDF.
On Saturday night, President Trump ordered the withdrawal of the remaining US forces in northern Syria so they don’t get caught in the middle of Turkey’s expanding assault.
The SDF helped the US in the years-long fight to destroy the ISIS caliphate in Syria, losing about 11,000 fighters in the process.
Ankara considers the SDF a terror group aligned with insurgents operating inside Turkey.
With Post Wires