21:14 GMT27 October 2020
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    The Turkish government’s war against PKK militants in the southwestern part of the country has turned out to be a deadly crackdown against Kurdish civilians not only in Turkey, but across the border in Syria, RT reported.

    Kurdish civilians living in northern Syria have been attacked by Turkish forces waging war against the PKK in southern Turkey. People have suffered daily from cross-border shelling, RT said.

    "At least two people including a child have been killed in Qamishli, as a result of the cross-border artillery fire, which has continued at regular pace since early March… On average more than 10 shells hit Qamishli daily," RT reported, citing a journalist on the ground, Akram Barkat.

    The journalist managed to get information from the town of Qamishli, which is situated some 200 meters away from the position of the Turkish Army. Below is exclusive footage obtained by RT.

    "I got out of a taxi and went to the bus stop, and then I heard the explosion. I touched myself and realized that I got a lot of shrapnel in me. Then I woke up in the hospital," Fatima Fattouche, a Qamishli resident, told RT.

    Tensions between Ankara and the Kurds escalated in July 2015 as fighting between the PKK, considered to be terrorists by Ankara and the Turkish army resumed. Ankara has imposed several round-the-clock curfews in Kurdish-populated towns, preventing civilians from fleeing the regions where the military operations are taking place.

    ​Last month, another RT journalist, William Whiteman, managed to sneak in and get exclusive footage from the city of Cizre, occupied by Turkish forces. He revealed numerous atrocities that had been carried out during the course of Ankara's military operation in Turkish Kurdistan.

    "All of the buildings were covered with bullet holes. When we turned around the corner I saw ruins all over the streets where children were playing. […] I inspected the first building. There was a room all bullet-riddled. There was blood on the floor. Locals told me this was a place where Kurdish militia troops were executed," Whiteman said.

    Then, the journalist told that he visited a basement floor where 50 people had been burned alive. However, Turkish forces removed all the bodies to hide the fact that civilians had been killed.

    According to the Turkish military, during the operation over 1,000 terrorists were killed. At the same time, locals said that in Cizre alone 500-600 civilians had been killed.

    ​"I think that thousands of civilians were killed in southeastern Turkey during the operation. Sometimes Turkish forces are especially brutal. They can impose a curfew in the area and then shell with heavy artillery. In the basement floor of one of the buildings 150 people were killed in a fire," the journalist said.

    Syria isn't the only country whose residents have been shelled by the Turkish Army. In March, the Turkish Air Force sent six warplanes to bomb villages in northern Iraq, suspecting PKK members hiding in these places.


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    Syrian Kurds, civilian deaths, shelling, crackdown, Turkish Armed Forces, Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), Turkey, Syria
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