Kurdish SDF commander killed in alleged Turkish drone attack was known for “saving American lives”
Salwa Yusuk, a Kurdish commander of Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) who was among the three female victims of an alleged Turkish drone attack near Qamishli last Friday, had a reputation for her courage in the fight against the Islamic State (ISIS), NBC News reported.
“There is no doubt she saved American lives on the battlefield,” a United States military official told NBC, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Salwa Yusuk (AKA Ciyan Afrin), Joana Hisso (AKA Roj Khabur) and Ruha Bashar (AKA Barin Botan) were killed near a residential area on Qamishli-Tirbespi (al-Qahtaniyah) road, an area controlled by the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES), when their car was targeted by a drone attack on July 22.
Mazloum Abdi, the general Commander of the SDF accused Turkey for the attack, praising three victims for their “heroism” in the war against ISIS.
“Turkey targeting them undermines the war against ISIS. Partners must make greater efforts to stop the violations. We will avenge them," he said.
Joint Operations Commander with @coalition, Jiyan Afrin with our comrades Roj and Barin, heroines took part in war against ISIS and rescued humanity.— Mazloum Abdî مظلوم عبدي (@MazloumAbdi) July 24, 2022
Turkey's targeting them undermines war against ISIS.
Partners must make greater efforts to stop violations.
We will avenge.
According to a US Central Command statement released after the attack, Salwa was a critical SDF leader who led forces in combat against ISIS since the height of the fight to defeat the vile ideology in Northeast Syria in 2017.
Salwa Yusuk (AKA Ciyan Afrin) a Deputy Commander of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) - along with 2 fellow female fighters - was killed in an attack near Qamishli, Syria, on July 22, 2022.— U.S. Central Command (@CENTCOM) July 24, 2022
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Turkey which has carried out three military operations into northern Syria since 2016, said in May that it may begin another offensive into the region to combat Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), a US-backed militant group which is allied with the West in a fight against the Islamic State (ISIS). YPG, that Ankara sees as an offshoot of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), is considered as the main fighting force of the SDF.