An ambulance en route to rescue wounded in a Turkish air strike was damaged in a bomb attack, according to the latest of the Kurdish groups who call a series of attacks against medical personnel in the north-east of Syria.
The ambulance, which carried red marks indicating that it was a medical vehicle, was heading to villages north of the Tal Tamr town on Saturday afternoon when the ambulance, which carried red markings indicating that it was a medical vehicle, was heading to villages north of Tal Tamr town on Saturday afternoon. she was hit by a burst of a weapon that exploded nearby. The two ambulance attendants inside were injured in the blast.
"The ambulance was targeted with heavy weapons," said Cadus, an independent German aid group and co-operator of the vehicle. "At the time of the attack, our ambulance was not working on the front."
Aram Hamidi, a Kurdish paramedic in the vehicle, said he had been hit by Turkish fire. "Our ambulance was hit and destroyed," he said in a video interview published by the Rojava Information Center, a media collective working in the area.
"Me and my colleague who was driving were injured … I was injured by a burst of shrapnel. I still have a piece in my jaw and all my teeth are broken. "
Photographs of the ambulance – also operated by the Kurdish Red Crescent, a humanitarian organization not affiliated with the International Committee of the Red Cross – showed cracked windows and blood stains on the seats.
A series of agreements between Ankara, Moscow and Washington ended Turkey's invasion of northeastern Syria earlier this month, but fighting continues on the borders of Turkey-controlled territory.
Kurdish groups claim that medical personnel have been targeted throughout the Turkish operation in the region and that it continues to be vulnerable. The Rojava Information Center estimates that five medical staff members have been killed since the beginning of the invasion last month. Three were kidnapped and executed and two died in drone strikes. At least seven others were injured, he added.
Sebastian Jünemann, CEO of Cadus, said it was not clear whether the ambulance had been hit by a drone or by artillery fire, and that it was was unclear whether she had been deliberately targeted. He added that Cadus had coordinated his movements with the UN Civil-Military Coordination Center.
"We were targeted by Isis in Mosul, but never by a state actor like Turkey, for example," said Jünemann. "In Mosul, we took some security measures … but in this situation, the actor is a member of NATO and we are assured that we are safe. Normally, we should be safe.
Kurdish groups accuse Turkish forces and their militia allies of attacking Kurdish Red Crescent medical facilities, including repeated attacks on a hospital in Ras al-Ayn city and an artillery shell. who landed near a medical convoy a week ago, killing a member of the Free Burma Rangers, an independent humanitarian group.
The Turkish government has always denied deliberately targeting vehicles or facilities for medical purposes. The Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs has been contacted for a comment.