Turkmens clash with Russia-backed al-Assad forces in northwest Syria

Turkmens clash with Russia-backed al-Assad forces in northwest Syria

HATAY - Doğan News Agency
Turkmens clash with Russia-backed al-Assad forces in northwest Syria

Clashes between Turkmens and forces loyal to the Syrian regime are continuing in the country’s northern Bayırbucak region, across from Turkey’s Yayladağı district. Photo taken from Turkmen social media accounts. DHA Photo

As Turkey has called for a U.N. Security Council meeting to discuss attacks on Turkmens in neighboring Syria, local Turkmens and the forces of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad started fighting each other on Nov. 23 to secure control of a hill close to the Turkmen-dominated Bayırbucak region in northwestern Syria. 

Turkmen forces clashed with regime forces backed by Russian support from the air with warplanes and choppers and also missiles from the sea. The fighting could be heard from the Yayladağı district in Turkey’s southern province of Hatay, on the border with Syria. 

The fierce clashes over control of the “Burç Kasap” mountain are strategically important, as the side that controls the mountain typically has superiority over the Bayırbucak region. 

Meanwhile, the Turkish Red Crescent said it would boost humanitarian aid to Syrian Turkmens who have been displaced because of al-Assad regime attacks backed by Russian airstrikes, its head Ahmet Lütfi Akar told Anadolu Agency on Nov. 23.

Around 1,700 Syrian Türkmen have arrived in southern Turkey over the last three days, southern Hatay province Governor Ercan Topaca said Nov. 22.

Red Crescent head Akar said tens of thousands of Türkmens from Syria’s northwestern region of Bayırbucak had recently been displaced, and the Turkish Red Crescent would step up its humanitarian efforts in response to the developing situation.

“In cooperation with AFAD [the Prime Ministry Disaster and Emergency Management Authority], we have sent to the region a large batch of tents, blankets, sleeping bags and food supplies. We are continuing to send humanitarian aid to the region, and as of today we are further accelerating our efforts,” he added.