Tal Abyad massacre

From A Closer Look On Syria
(Redirected from Tal-Abyad)
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Syria in February 2014, black shows ISIS possessions.


August 5, 2013

Afghan children killed in "Nato bombing"

This was just published by PressTV: -- Petri Krohn (talk) 16:24, 5 August 2013 (UTC)

Foreign-backed militants fighting against the Syrian government have killed 450 civilians, including 120 children, in a Kurdish-majority area in northern Syria.
According to al-Alam, militants from al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front attacked Tal Abyad district of Raqqa governorate on Monday, killing 330 women and elderly men as well as 120 children.
The massacre comes a week after al-Nusra militants attacked two Kurdish villages in Aleppo and took hostage around 200 civilians.
Terrorists affiliated to al-Nusra Front have massacred 120 children and 330 men and women in Syria's northern district of Tal Abyad, al-Alam reports.
According to our reporter, terrorists attacked villages in Tal Abyad, near al-Hasakah governorate on Monday, killing civilians including women and children.
The Kurdish dominated region of Tal Abyad located in north of Al-Raqqa governorate, was already volatile after terrorist groups from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant and al-Nusra Front attacked the region weeks ago to take it under control.
Deadly clashes have been going on in the region as Kurds gathered volunteer fighters and started to stand against terrorists.
Kurds have come under attack in Aleppo as well, where earlier this week terrorists launched an assault on Tall `Aran and Tall Hasel, killing and abducting many people and forcing others to leave.
Videos posted online by the militant groups showed hundreds of women and children in Tall `Aran, lying dead on the ground after their homes and plant fields were bombed.
Erbil, Asharq Al-Awsat—The Party of Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK), a Kurdish organization in Iran, has announced that it is “ready to send fighters to Syrian Kurdistan to fight beside their people.”
The decision comes in the light of ongoing clashes between the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Syria and Islamist groups such as Jabhat Al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
Sources within Syria pointed out that “fatwas are broadcast from mosques in the region that permit Kurdish blood to be spilled. This development is very dangerous and is reminiscent of the infamous Operation Anfal, but this time against Syrian Kurds.”
A source within the People’s Protection Unit (YPG), which is affiliated with the PYD, informed Asharq Al-Awsat that 63 people were killed yesterday in clashes between Kurdish fighters and Jabhat Al-Nusra and ISIS. The source added that Kurdish fighters had seized weapons, ammunition and armored fighting vehicles.
“As a result of increasing threats and terrorist forces consolidated against us . . . as well as some members from the Free Syrian Army (FSA) joining this suspicious alliance, there is an urgent and intense desire among young men and women from Kurdish areas to join the YPG.”
The source continued, explaining that “many of them are now aware of the overt agendas of forces hostile to the Kurdish people within Syria. As such, they have proceeded to defend the rights that they recently had access to, thanks to the Democratic Union Party. Every day we receive hundreds of young men and women coming to volunteer, and we are currently working to assimilate them—despite our modest means.”
Sherzad Al-Yazidi, the official spokesperson for the People’s Council of West Kurdistan, said in a statement to Asharq Al-Awsat that “What occurred in Tell Abyad, and is happening today in Ramilan and Ras Al-Ain, was elements and forces from the Free Syrian Army participating . . . in a race war against us.”
Yazidi claimed that FSA units had been brought in from Deir Ezzor and Raqqa to participate in the “race war,” and that they had “deliberate intentions” to “eliminate the model of Kurdish governance, which we have proposed for Syria overall—a model of coexistence and brotherhood, away from sectarianism and racism.”
“Nevertheless,” he concluded, “what we see today in the Kurdish streets—a united youth who are willing to sacrifice their lives in defense of the freedom that they have achieved—confirms that enemies’ intentions will fail.”
It has been confirmed, the NATO-created Jabhat Al-Nusra freak rodents and their allies in the Al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia and the Levant, came out of Turkey, armed by Erdoghan and Saudi Arabia, trained by the U.S. and its allies, and MASSACRED 120 INNOCENT CHILDREN AND 300 MOTHERS in the town of Tal Abyadh in Kurdish-controlled Al-Raqqa. We are in contact with Aslan in Iskandaroon today and he tells me that the anger amongst Turkish officers, especially after the recent military shake-up, is bursting. Turks are fully aware that Erdoghan is supporting these acts of inhuman outrage. We will be receiving more news as the Kurdish media services begin sending in their reports in detail about this heinous and atrocious crime aided and abetted by Obama and his simian Saudi allies.
According to al-Alam, terrorists attacked villages in Tal Abyad, near al-Hasakah governorate, killing civilians including women and children.

August 6, 2013

A gruesome video has emerged on the Internet, showing foreign-backed militants in Syria setting three Syrian Kurds on fire.
The video, which was posted online on Monday, shows the al-Qaeda-affiliated group al-Nusra Front militants pouring a flammable liquid on the hand-cuffed, blind-folded men who appear to be Syrian Kurd soldiers.
The militants then push the three into a fire they have made.
Reports said that al-Nusra militants attacked Tal Abyad district of Raqqa governorate in northern Syria on Monday, killing 450 civilians. The victims were said to be women, children and the elderly.
A gruesome video has emerged on the Internet, showing al-Qaeda-affiliated group al-Nusra Front terrorists setting three Syrians on fire.
Clay Claiborne shows this video is from Iraq from 2011. (No, 2007) -- Petri Krohn (talk) 16:33, 9 August 2013 (UTC)

August 19, 2013

Gaza Ali village in Tal Abyad
Thousands of people flowed from Syria across the Peshkhabour border crossing into Iraq's Dohuk Governorate
Syrian Kurd fighters have successfully freed a village in Tal Abyad District which has recently been witnessing a surge of violence with presence of al-Qaeda-linked Takfiri militants.
According to al-Alam reporter, the Gaza Ali village was completely cleared from Takfiri militants on Monday.
Syrian army soldiers who were backed by Kurdish fighters continued their mop-up operation in the area during which they found a 25kg bomb set on the road to the northeastern city of Hasakah.
The UN says thousands of Syrian refugees are pouring into Iraqi Kurdistan as violence continues in the Arab country with support of US and its Western and regional allies.
Up to 10,000 crossed at Peshkhabour on Saturday, bringing the total influx since Thursday to 20,000. The UN says the reasons are not fully clear.
20,000 since Thursday? Wow. Conditions must be at least as bad as we've been hearing. --Caustic Logic (talk) 22:39, 19 August 2013 (UTC)
“Syrian refugees are still pouring into Iraq's northern Kurdish region in huge numbers and most of them are women and children. The reason behind this sudden flow is still not clear,” Youssef Mahmoud, a spokesman for the UNHCR in Iraq's Kurdish autonomous region, said on Monday, as quoted by AP.

Is this before or after the above, or not true, I hope? SOHR Facebook, 7 hours ago it says:

al-Raqqa province: Fighters from the ISIS, al-Nusra front and some rebel factions stormed houses of Kurdish civilians in the Tal Abiad city, Kurdish activists from the city reported that several we kidnapped as a result. Rebel fighters stormed the towns of Tal Fandar and Tal Akhdar in Reef Tal Abiad. --Caustic Logic (talk) 22:39, 19 August 2013 (UTC)

August 24, 2013

The Islamic State of the Levant and Iraq controls eight Kurdish towns in Tal Abyad (Yabseh, Talfandar, Sussek, Yarko, Madkletteh, Tanbozzeh & Kahersat) – and all have been totally destroyed by the group’s fighters, who have taken the main police station as their base, plus another base in Shableh village.
Tal Abyad is a town in Raqqa that originally consists of Arabs, Kurds, Armenians, and Turks; the residents are over 200,000, %30 of them are Kurds. Recently, after the Islamic state controlled the area many of the Arab residents have fled to Turkey, most of the Armenians left the town too.

August 28, 2013

Fresh al-Qaeda video:

September 2013

The border gate in Şanlıurfa’s Akçakale district has seen an increased flow of Syrian refugees in recent days due to clashes in Syria’s Rakka province and the situation at the crossing has become unmanageable, according to a report sent by Şanlıurfa governor’s office to the Security

January 2014

داعش ترتكب مجازر بحق المدنيين الاكراد في بلدة تل حميس بريف الحسكة
ISIS committed massacres against Kurdish civilians in the town of Tal Hamis Brive-Hasakah
A group linked to al Qaeda recaptured much of its stronghold in the northeast Syrian city of Raqqa on Sunday, activists said, dealing a blow to rival rebel groups backed by Gulf Arab and Western states.
Fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) battled remnants of rival Islamist units including the Nusra Front, another al Qaeda affiliate, in several neighbourhoods of Raqqa, they said.
To the north, ISIL recaptured the town of Tel Abyad on the border with Turkey over the weekend, they said.



Kurdish sources

Kurdish sources: I made the round through the usual Kurdish outlets and while they're full of news about the escalating fights between YPG and the Takfiri Robots, there's nothing about that specific event so far, which is kind of odd. The 63 dead in fighting mentioned in the Sherzad Shekhani article quoted above show up, but no single event with 450 dead in Tal Abyad. Not on Rudaw, not on Firat, not on Die Kurden. --CE (talk) 13:46, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

I could not find anything either. Nothing on YouTube of the "videos posted online by the militant groups" supposedly showing hundreds of bodies. I collected videos on a playlist but all I have is fighting between Kurds and al-Nusra.
No mention of a Tell Abyad / Tal Abyad / Til Ebyed / Girê Spî ‪‎massacre‬ on this Kurdish PDY Info page. There is this one post from August 1, 2013.
In the last few days over 50 civilian Kurds have been executed by Jabhat al-Nusra and ISIS members in Til Eran and Til Hasil. Most of the civilians executed are mothers, fathers and siblings to Jabhat al-Ekrad members (Jabhat al-Ekrad have been fighting both the ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra).
-- Petri Krohn (talk) 20:13, 6 August 2013 (UTC)
Yeah, this incident with the 50 civilians killed in the other villages (close to Aleppo) I have found articles about as well. That seems to have taken place some days earlier around the turn Juli/August and directly related to the kidnapping of the 200 civilians. There's all hell breaking loose in the region atm. "Funny" that we hear not a beep about that in the corporate press, isn't it? Well, we know why. Anyway, I monitored the #TwitterKurds stream a while, still not much about this event and if so, only references to the PressTV/AlAlam item. RT picked it up in a short report. The demonstration at the end of it is likely in Ceylanpinar, the Turkish part of Serekaniye... --CE (talk) 22:04, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

Thanks, guys. I haven't even barely touched this and already two people are more on it, wow. Sounds pretty iffy, between the misatributed (?) photo and lack of verifying reports. But from the locale, looking for a new entry point, makes too much sense to dismiss totally yet. Notlikely to be simple confusion with these other civilian mass killings, which are in towns (tal-Aran and Tal-Hasl) around al-Safirah SE of Aleppo. That's of interest as well and seems more supported and in line with the known rebel policy of targeting whole families on lines of the adult males' politics. --Caustic Logic (talk) 22:01, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

Wow, I wonder why there was no edit conflict? Smart software. :o) See above, I agree that the other one is better supported. Maybe we need a general page covering this new Kurds vs. Turds war? --CE (talk) 22:07, 6 August 2013 (UTC)
Quick discussion here. That sounds like a good plan. That name wouldn't work, but as a nickname I love it. --Caustic Logic (talk) 22:12, 6 August 2013 (UTC)
I'll bring the Ras Al-Ayn article up to date tonight. It's important to this. From what I know so far it (re-)started around two weeks ago when the Turds attacked a convoy of female YPG fighters ("ey, why don't you wear a sack?"), which led to the end of the ceasefire/agreement and the Kurds kicked them out for good, apparently this time including from the border crossing which they now control, which could mean as you said that the Turds indeed need a new entry in Akcacale/Tal Abyad. And Ceylanpinar sees solidarity demonstrations with Turks coming from all over the region and camping in some park... amazing stuff. Details later over there. --CE (talk) 22:19, 6 August 2013 (UTC)
From what I read elsewhere the latest round of violence started from the split between al-Nusra and ISIS. The Kurds had a truce with al-Nusra, but ISIS did not want to respect it. The stories now however speak about fighting between the Kurds and al-Nusra, not ISIS. -- Petri Krohn (talk) 01:17, 7 August 2013 (UTC)
"400 kidnapped" might explain a lot. It is just possible that the videos were on line on YouTube, but were pulled by the Kurdish sources. There may be negotiation going on and they do not want to "complicate" the situation. I do not think YouTube / NSA / CIA could have censored all this, but who knows. -- Petri Krohn (talk) 01:51, 7 August 2013 (UTC)

August 4

Salih Muslim, the co-chair of the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) interviewed by Taraf (Turkey), August 3rd or 4th:

We discussed Turkey not allowing them to cross the border and for Turkey to exert pressure on the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and other opposition groups to isolate Jabhat al-Nusra. This was promised. But on Aug. 2, eyewitnesses reported to us that between 8 and 10 pm, vehicles carrying weapons and ammunition crossed from Karkamis gate of Gaziantep. Our people on the Syrian side confirmed the reports. The weapons were transferred to Arab villages, mostly Shiyoh, west of Kobani. They are getting ready to attack Kobani and civilians. Salafists killed so many civilians, but the world kept silent. Kobani is next.
It is impossible to understand how Turkey can permit this. If Nusra is an enemy, then this must be stopped. If Turkey is against Nusra, then it must be on our side.

August 5

Clashes between YPG (Kurdish People's Defense Units) and al-Qaeda-linked armed groups are continuing in the Western Kurdistan areas of Kobani, Tirbespiyê and Çelaxa.
Til Ebyad (Girê Spî): clashes were reported in the village of Susikê. YPG managed to clear the area and seized weaponry.
YPG spokesman: "Since we started fighting Jihadists, 70 civilian kurds were killed, 400 kidnapped." #twitterkurds

August 6

New convoys are heading towards Ceylanpınar to join the vigil for the people of Rojava and against the massacres carried out by al-Qaeda-linked armed groups. The convoys started off from Adıyaman.
The vigil has been organized by the BDP (Peace and Democracy Party) and the DTK (Democratic Society Congress) and continues despite the heavy police repression.

August 7

PYD tweeted an hour ago: "200 Kurdish civilians in Til Ebyed are still being held in captivity by Jabhat al Nusra. They are in dire condition.". Fits. --CE (talk) 17:06, 7 August 2013 (UTC)

August 8

It is reported that some 200 Kurdish civilians in Til Abyad are still being held in captivity by Jabhat al Nusra. They are in dire condition.
On 5 August foreign-backed and allegedly al-Qaeda-linked militants have killed 450 civilians, including 120 children, in Kurdish-majority Tal Abyad in northern Syria.
According to al-Alam, militants from al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front attacked Tal Abyad district of Raqqa governorate on Monday, killing 330 women and elderly men as well as 120 children.
The massacre comes a week after al-Nusra militants attacked two Kurdish villages in Aleppo and took hostage around 200 civilians.
Kurdish sources citing al-Alam. Where did al-Alam get the story? -- Petri Krohn (talk) 16:01, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

Here is another Kurdish source that has no real information but only quotes what al Alam and RT are saying, Peace in Kurdistan Campaign Statement:

August 9

Jittu emphasized that some of the battalions of the Free [Army] that attacked Tel 'Iran withdrew after learning the truth, but Jabhat an-Nusra and the Islamic State conquered the town and committed massacres and kidnapped unarmed civilians. He said that there are still more than 200 incarcerated civilians in the hands of the Islamic State and noted that both Jabhat an-Nusra and the state of Islam committed massacres against the civilians in both Tal 'Iran and Tal Hasil, and before that in Tal Abyad, under total silence from most of the Free Army battalions.

August 11

Syrian rebel fighters kidnapped 13 Kurds in the northern province of Aleppo on Sunday, turning them over to jihadist fighters already holding 250 abducted Kurds, an NGO said.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the 13 were snatched at a roadblock in the Sfeira region of Aleppo and passed them on to Al-Nusra Front, a jihadist group affiliated with Al-Qaeda.
Al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS), another Al-Qaeda-linked group operating in Syria, have abducted more than 250 Syrian Kurds since the end of July.
The majority were taken hostage as the two groups overran two Kurdish villages, Tall Aren and Tall Hassel, at the end of July.

August 14

This piece has eyewitness testimony including a video which doesn't play for me, and deals exclusively with "Til Hasil and Til Aran", no word about Tal/Til Abyad. --CE (talk) 22:47, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
What exactly is Rojava? Wikipedia suggests is all of Syrian Kurdistan; Rojavayê Kurdistanê = Western Kurdistan. -- Petri Krohn (talk) 03:19, 15 August 2013 (UTC)
The video is here. Going trough the source code for the page, it is easy to reconstruct a direct link to the video file:
Watch on-line or download :-) Petri Krohn (talk) 03:36, 15 August 2013 (UTC)
Thanks, Petri. Spot on with Rojava as well. Part Two: --CE (talk) 15:16, 15 August 2013 (UTC)

August 15

The other day a young Kurd taken to Til Aran hospital after being wounded from militants of the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front, was once again kidnapped by the same group. The boy was then beheaded in public in the hospital. He was called Xemis Berho, he was only 23 years old. He could not tell us what he had previously been through....

August 16

Redor Khalil: I think that if the US truly wanted to get to the bottom of this, it would be very easy – it’s crystal clear what exactly is happening. The massacre of Kurdish civilians in places like Tal Hasil and Tal Aran is a dark but undeniable fact. There are eyewitnesses of these events, and we at the YPG, as well as several Kurdish civilians, have documentary proof of it. We are ready to give this proof to international organizations and mass media to show them the truth of this horrible war the radical Islamists are fighting on our soil. I think the main reason for this massacre is that the YPG defeated the militants at Ras al-Ayn where they were based, maintaining control over a border checkpoint. After they suffered defeat at Rumeylan the radical groups attacked civilians who are not involved in military action.

August 31

Aleppo province: A group, thought to be part of the ISIS, released 20 Syrian Kurdish civilians from the Afrin area after kidnapping them several days ago, by A'zaz, from Pullman busses that were heading to Qamishli city. The released captives reported that they were badly treated and tortured, and that the armed group tortured and then killed the driver of one of the busses. Activists from the area report that more than 50 Syrian Kurdish civilians are still being detained by these kidnappers. 1 woman was killed by a sniper on death crossing in Aleppo city. 1 civilian was tortured to death by regime forces who detained him from the A'thamiya checkpoint.

Russian sources

Russia is still insisting the story of massacre is true.

The UN Security Council must unambiguously condemn the reported killings of Kurds by radical forces, which try to establish an Islamist state in Syria, says Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
Lavrov commented on Wednesday on the reported slaughter of 450 Kurd civilians, including more than 120 children, by the Islamist Al-Nusra Front.
According to Iranian TV channel Al-Alam, militants from the Jabhat al-Nusra Front attacked the town of Tal Abyad on Monday, killing 120 children and 330 women and elderly near the Turkish border.
The channel also ran horrific uncensored footage from the scene - the authenticity of which can’t be independently verified at this moment. For ethical reasons, RT will refrain from airing the video.
Neither the Syrian government nor the opposition has confirmed the report. RT contacted a number of sources, including several Kurdish interviewees, who testified that increased fighting has been taking place in their areas.
At least, the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov would not have mentioned this mass killing of Syrian Kurds, including about 120 children and many Kurdish women, by the Syrian al-Qaeda offshoot (al-Nusra Front / Jabhat al-Nusra) in case the reports about this next horrible massacre by foreign-supported jihadists and terrorists on Syrian soil would be false and not true. In addition, Russia should know whether such reports and massacres are true or false, to be honest.

Video: Reports Islamists massacre 450 Kurds in Syria, including 120 kids -- Petri Krohn (talk) 02:30, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

Witnesses are starting to emerge with grisly tales of kidnapping, rape and murder of Kurdish minorities in the north and north-east of Syria. Clashes between Al-Qaeda-linked militants and soldiers of the Kurdish Front have sunk the region into chaos.
“When civilians escaped, they were shot, and militia raided houses, blowing up some and robbing others… they still have more than 200 civilian hostages,” Zakaria Mohammed said speaking exclusively to RT Arabic about the violence that started out with an assault on four towns in the north of Syria.
Mohammed is a speaker and activist for the Kurdish Front, who bore witness to events that began one weekend in late July, as several battalions of FSA, Al-Nusra Front and Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant fighters surrounded their headquarters in the town of Tal Hasel.
The clashes quickly spread to Tal Aran, Tal Abyad, and Serekaniye. As a result of there not being any reinforcements to support Kurdish troops’ smaller numbers, the civilian withdrawals resulted in massacres and the kidnapping of over 500 people.
According to Mohammed, those who had managed to escape are currently in safe houses in the city of Afreen. Telecommunications with Tal Aran and Tal Hasel have been severed. Many people, however, are still in danger as violence may once again flare up. Jabhat Al-Nusra Front, together with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, control the area.
Some have since returned to their homes, facing strict checks by Al-Nusra Front, to determine if they belong to any specific political grouping. Those that do are killed. In any case, one major theory of Islamist anger at the Kurds is the latter’s unwillingness to partake in the wider Syrian conflict. Their ethnic and cultural identity has left Kurds on the sidelines of the wider Syrian conflict.
The Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) is issuing reports that “hundreds of Kurdish civilians have been kidnapped, tortured and their houses have been looted and burned down. These ongoing brutal massacres are targeting all Kurdish civilians in Qamishli, Kobani and Afreen areas.”
The events that started in mid-July have culminated in the carnage of August 5, when 450 people were allegedly killed in Tal Abyad and the surrounding area, with horrific footage emerging from Iranian channel, Al-Alam.
Although the media still has no information on either numbers or the particulars of that day, some Kurds are coming out with very similar reports of recent lootings and attacks on their settlements by Islamic extremists and FSA troops.
“The Al-Nusra militants and other rebel forces surrounded the village,” Yasin Tarbush, a relative of one of the Kurdish attack victims, told RT on August 7. “They started going door to door, entering every house. If there were any men, they killed them and took the women and children hostage.”


Still no sign of the massacre video. Some info here:

The Iranian state television channel Al-Alam reported on Monday about the massacre, which includes 120 children to have fallen victim to. Accordingly, the village was allegedly attacked on the border with Turkey by the Islamist Al-Nusra front. The upgraded from Saudi Arabia and Qatar militia have been repeatedly accused of massacres of civilians and the execution of prisoners. The massacre had occurred after residents of the village had tried to fight back the attackers armed. A video circulating on the internet since Monday shows the bodies of dozens of children and women.
The channel also ran horrific uncensored footage from the scene - the authenticity of which can’t be independently verified at this moment. For ethical reasons, RT will refrain from airing the video.

-- Petri Krohn (talk) 14:25, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

Turkish television interviewing al-Nusra commander in Tal Abyad on July , 2013:

(A news Tel Abyad 'THE COMMANDER OF AL NUSRA "No, do not get annoyed, we are fighting for you.")
At 3:05 we hear an English message to the Free World: "Our dear brothers Kurds, we are here to help you."

-- Petri Krohn (talk) 16:27, 8 August 2013 (UTC)

Found it!

I think I have finally found the video that was supposedly too horrific for RT to broadcast. al Alam says "Videos posted online by the militant groups showed hundreds of women and children in Tall `Aran, lying dead on the ground after their homes and plant fields were bombed." (By my standards lying dead on the ground after being bombed does not make an al-Qaeda massacre.)

Two versions of the video are embedded in this reposting of the FARS News story.

One version of the video uploaded August 1, is titled US-Israel-Turkey en Al-Qaeda and Al-Nusra killing Kurdish Muslims in Syria Rojava The second version was uploaded already on April 18: +18 Tirbespiyê - Beşar Esad'ın ucakları savunmasız Kürt sivilleri bombalayıp öldürüyor (+18 Tirbespiyê - Bashar al-Assad planes bombed Kurdish civilians killing defenseless) I already had one version on my playlist uploaded April 17: The first scenes of the massacre in the village of Smith Poet countryside

The nine minute video shows women and children running across fields fleeing some shelling or bombing. About 10 wounded or dead people are shown lying on the field after a nearby hit from a stray shell or bomb. The video is watermarked ANHA. -- Petri Krohn (talk) 03:44, 9 August 2013 (UTC)

Other videos

The Jawa Report finds this video:

From the same channel we find this:

The video is a collection of old massacre and war crime footage. Parts of the "blowing up houses material" from August 1st is included. What shows the video to be just "worthless propaganda" with no value as evidence is the inclusion of photos from the Baniyas massacre in the end. Besides, there is no CNN Kurdish. -- Petri Krohn (talk) 21:04, 10 August 2013 (UTC)


I have seen on Facebook someone pushing pictures of a child victim of the Houla massacre (Yasmine Abdul Razaq) as a victim from Tal Abyad. There is the men pushed in the fire video, from Iraq, years old, come to learn. The Afghan children picture, the unsupported (so far) 450 killed, etc. (see below) That's from below and off the top of my head, and it seems to me more error than usual and I wonder if it means anything. Might deserve a section (almost re-named this like "errors and confusion"). I could see this being the result of a disinfo campaign to cloud things enough this could all seem made-up. I'm not pointing fingers, just hypothetically. I shield myself with the ignorance of not knowing the material yet. --Caustic Logic (talk) 06:46, 11 August 2013 (UTC)

Consider also the similarity in time and crime with the Latakia incursions and you have reports like Al-Nusra Massacres 450 Kurds in Lattakia Islamic Invitation Turkey Aug. 7 --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:53, 12 August 2013 (UTC)

Someone has noticed that the "Assad Regime" used a fake photo:

-- Petri Krohn (talk) 22:41, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

Rebuttal conversation on twitter:

Kurds: Al Alam news of 450 Kurd civs slaughtered by jihadis is false. Truth is 70 Kurd civs killed, 400 kidnapped. http://en.alalam.ir/news/1502236'

Net News Global is a great news aggregator I daily use and the guy who runs it is no bullshitter. Wladimir van Wilgenburg writes for Rudaw and is not without flaws but well-connected (based in NL if i'm not mistaken). The latter tweeted already yesterday:

Looks more and more like made-up by Al-Alam

--CE (talk) 23:55, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

Spin, comment, and analysis

Context Discussion

In the direction of making sense of and organizing this page and the various subjects revolving around it, I have a few thoughts. But they're not well-formed. I'm overwhelmed by this story, the details, the possible scale, the other such stories breaking all at once, the unusual level of confusion, etc. Possible issue pages that could come out of this: Kurdistan Massacres (??), The Taking of Tal-Abyad, August 2013 massacres in the north (there will be more, perhaps quieter as phone lines go dead, etc.). The last suggests a bigger picture yet I find fascinating. All this last week or so has been an amazing string of reports of major rebel victories across the north and morale boosts. It seems they were able to easily take over a whole new border crossing when the kurds closed the other, and effect some swift and undeniably massive punishment on those kurds. They took Khan al-Assal recently, killed Shia. Mengh airport, longtime target. Now the airport airport too? This is threatening to become irreversible if very true. Taking Tal-Aran etc. down by the airport. And to the west, they punched into Latakia's towns like never before, if briefly. Every step, showing new capabilities and giving a morale boost. Lots of celebration showing what they do when boosted. Massacres on every front, mass abductions, unclear details, touchy stuff, negotiations... So in the end, what could we assemble about this whole time of expansion so many powerful people have worked towards, and its effect on the human rights scene in Syria? No rush on that, it's all still evolving, but something will come together. --Caustic Logic (talk) 12:06, 10 August 2013 (UTC)


It's a town of 13-14 thousand citizens (says wikipedia with not much more information, the German article has a picture of a Christian church), and it's directly at the border to Turkey, comparable to the situation in Ras Al-Ayn (I have a tab-group with a bunch of articles open in the browser since at least a week and have yet to write the latest chapter of THAT drama). Here on wikimapia, here on Google Maps. --CE (talk) 20:12, 5 August 2013 (UTC)

It's the site of the autumn 2012 shelling incident that (among others?) led to the Patriot missiles inside Turkey. Here is a long Daily Fail article with a bunch of photos of the Akcakale border crossing and a damaged customs office building in Tal Abayd. --CE (talk) 20:24, 5 August 2013 (UTC)

Older stuff

Islamic extremists battling Kurdish fighters in the north Syrian town of Tal Abyad are holding "hundreds" of civilians as prisoners, a watchdog said on Sunday.
They were rounded up after jihadist commander Abu Musab was imprisoned by Kurdish fighters late on Saturday. The commander was freed on Sunday, various sources said.
"Hundreds of civilian relatives of Kurdish fighters were taken prisoner by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS)," said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
After the PYD took control of border areas, the border crossings at Nusaybin, Ceylanpinar and Akcakale — which link Syria's Kurdish region to Turkey — were closed. The closure caused shortages of food and other essential items, forcing the Syrian Kurds to meet their needs through the Arabiyya crossing, which opens to the Kurdish region of northern Iraq. But this crossing was off limits to Syrian Kurds because of the problems between the PYD and Syrian Kurdish groups loyal to Massoud Barzani, the Kurdistan Regional Government president. The crossing was being occasionally opened for essential supplies. The PYD has now decided to expand its operations to the north, to capture the Arabiyya crossing that leads to Mosul.
A third video by the same name seems unrelated, published August 5. Turkish journalist interviews YPG, who are now in full control.
Dozens of Syrian-Kurds gathered in front of Downing Street in London on 28th July 2013, to protest against violence waged by Islam-fanatics belonging to Jabhat al-Nusra on Kurdish towns. The Kurdish group YPG and PYD have protected villages, towns and cities from such Islamists. This comes shortly after PYD liberated Sere Kanye (Ras el Ain) from al-Nusra.
#Syria #Raqqa 16 PYD members killed in in Tal-Abiad http://wikimapia.org/#lang=de&lat=36.686385&lon=38.942327&z=14&m=b

Patriot missile?

UNCONFIRMED: Patriot missile intercepted a missile west of Tal Abiad on Syria-Turkey border

link to twitter.com

Picked up from someone else yet, extremely tenuous so far. See conversation. --Caustic Logic (talk) 23:05, 5 August 2013 (UTC)

Could be somehow related to this: -- Petri Krohn (talk) 23:40, 5 August 2013 (UTC)

Meanwhile in Turkey...

Fears about violent and bloody clashes in Turkey today, 5 August have increased after Prime Minister R. Tayyip Erdogan and the governor of Istanbul have deployed 6 brigades of military personnel and heavily armed riot police to the protect the prison and court in the city of Silivri.
Large amounts of riot police, armed with firearms and so-called rubber-coated ammunition, which is lethal at close range, have been deployed at key positions. The deployment came tonight and during the early morning hours, as Turkey´s opposition has vowed to defy Prime Minister Erdogan´s crackdown, arrests and threats of violence.

-- Petri Krohn (talk) 00:08, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

Rebel attack in Latakia

Moved to Talk:Latakia Massacres

Turkish responsibility

The Turkish-Syrian border is constructed like the Inner German border, there is a mine field half-a-mile wide on the Turkish side. The explicit purpose of this barrier to prevent (Kurdish) insurgents and weapons from moving across the border. It is thus impossible for anything to enter Syria from Turkey without the explicit approval and support of the Erdogan government. -- Petri Krohn (talk) 07:18, 10 August 2013 (UTC)

The PYD also adds that "These armed terrorist groups which are a major threat to the regional and global stability and peace, have been militarily facilitated by Turkey and supplied by the Gulf States. The recent intervention of six military tanks and hundreds of jihadists from Turkey into Tel-Abeyd, Syria, shows the Turkish involvement in the on-going Syrian sectarian war which neither serves the interests of Syrians nor Turkey and its allies".
But with its radical ideology and tactics such as kidnappings and beheadings, [the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant] has stamped its identity on the communities in which it is present, including, crucially, ­areas surrounding the main border crossings with Turkey.
Talk page, talking. Thanks for bringing some new things to this page. Interesting article, for a mainstream one. Man, I didn't get much done here today. --Caustic Logic (talk) 12:02, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
Quote highlight:
And unlike in Iraq during the insurgency, Islamic State fighters don’t have to contend with U.S. forces hunting them down, said Brian Fishman, a former director of research at West Point’s Combating Terrorism Center who is now with the New America Foundation. “They can plan better and discipline better, and that is dangerous.” he said.
Curious and massive omission in that paragraph - isn't someone trying to hunt them down, but having everybody trip them up and encourage and allow accelerated swamping, and would have been bombing them by now if that was possible? Vague and troubling implications of its logic - with only a blank spot against al-Qaeda at the moment, only one the US and the axis of willingness re-occupies the Iraq-and al-Sham area can the danger be put in proper check again. Right? --Caustic Logic (talk) 12:10, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
Quite insightful (including a look into the sick, glazing eyes of John McCain ;o)) article about the miraculous policy of Turkey concerning the situation in Rojava. --CE (talk) 16:35, 15 August 2013 (UTC)

Russian responsibility?

Meanwhile, Russia is allowing the Syrian regime to pursue tactics that Moscow has mastered, such as turning over some areas to hardline Islamists a few months ago (Nusra and ISIS), in the province of Raqqa. This was in order to spark a struggle between these two groups and the rebel Free Syrian Army, as well as with the Kurdish forces in the country's northeast. Moscow looked on, even though its chief excuse in supporting the Syrian regime is its concern about the control over Syria by hardline Islamists and terrorists, if the regime falls. In Egypt, Moscow ignores the regime's repression of the Brotherhood for the sole reason that Washington has been critical of the crackdown.

Hat-tip goes to user "somebody" on Moon of Alabama. Unfortunately he did not provide a link to the article. Google saves the day! It found the Arabic original based on a search with a quote from the English translation! -- Petri Krohn (talk) 08:22, 18 August 2013 (UTC)

That's pretty funny. As they explain, there's a certain stupid logic to it, but it's really stupid. More Syrian government responsibility than Russian, handing over the area intentionally to Islamists, (who I guess they had shuttled in?), with Russia acquiescing in one of the rebellions greatest coups, just to illustrate a point (that's otherwise baseless, BTW). --Caustic Logic (talk) 09:18, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
And, wait, why is this here? He's talking about Raqqah, not Tal-Abyad. --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:09, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
It would be a sound policy for the Syrian Army to concentrate on the "secular" / "moderate" rebels – that is anyone getting funding and arms from the US – and allocating less resources on fighting al-Qaeda. One can ask if it is the responsibility of the Syrian Army to protect the people of Raqqa and the Kurds from al-Nusra and the ISIS? Most of the blame must go to Kurds. They are responsible for siding with Turkey and the rebels and letting the Islamists in. -- Petri Krohn (talk) 10:20, 18 August 2013 (UTC)

Demolition of houses

The footage shown by RT shows al Nusra or ISIS blowing up Kurdish houses with huge barrels of explosives placed in the middle of the living room. I will collect some other footage here.

Syriavideo.net has a collection of videos from Tal Abyad - Ar-Raqqah. The latest ones are from August 1.

There are also some fresh videos from Tal Abyad filed under Raqqa. Here an al-Nusra commander seems to be bragging to a reporter about how he blew up a Kurdish house.

Other Abuses

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported on its Facebook page, August 6:

Aleppo province: A rebel battalion detained 2 Kurdish civilians from the town of Tel'eran, east Reef Aleppo, this Friday while the civilians were fleeing from the rebel and ISIS attack on their village and the village of Tel Hasel. The 2 civilians were held captive in the cable factory, east of the Tel Hasel, and were tortured badly while there. The victims were able to escape and have reached the village of Belat, by al-Sfeira city.

News blackout?