Turkish drone attack kills five in Iraq's Nineveh province
Five people, including a woman, were killed in a civilian car when hit by a Turkish drone missile west of Mosul on Sunday afternoon, according to Iraqi and Kurdish officials.
"A Turkish drone bombed a civilian vehicle west of Mosul at 2:20 p.m on Sunday, killing four men and a woman. The identity of the driver is known, but the identities of the woman and three other men are yet unknown," Najm al-Jubouri, governor of Nineveh, said in a statement.
"We strongly condemn this assault which destabilises the security of this province after it has been improving from the effects of the Islamic State gangs. This attack dangerously jeopardises Nineveh's citizens, and we ask the Iraqi government to protest against such acts by the Turkish government," the statement added.
The Kurdistan Counter-Terrorism unit affiliated with the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) claimed in a statement that a Turkish drone attacked a civilian car, consequently killing five fighters, four men and a woman, from the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).
Outlets close to the PKK insist the victims were civilians.
Photographs posted online on social media platforms show the car with a plate of Erbil, the capital city of the Iraqi Kurdistan region. Iraqi Twitter users have posted a photo of the vehicle's driver, identified his name as Ahmed al-Jubouri and claimed that he was a student from Mosul University.
Al-Ahd satellite channel close to the Iraqi Shia faction in the country posted a video of the wreckage of the car entirely burnt.
The New Arab contacted the PKK press office and Mazin al-Ahmadi, spokesperson for Nineveh's police force, for comments on the attack, but neither were available to comment at the time of publication.
Hundreds of Iraqi and Kurdish civilians have been killed by Turkish airstrikes across northern Iraq, while the Turkish army claims to be targeting PKK militants.
"Since 2015, the Turkish Armed Forces have killed up to 129 civilians and wounded up to 180 civilians in northern Iraq," the international human rights organisation and monitoring group Community Peacemaker Teams (CPT) Iraqi Kurdistan reported last month.
A 12-year child was killed by a Turkish drone strike on a marketplace in the Snune sub-district of Sinjar in the Iraqi Kurdistan region on 16 June.
Two days later, four people, including Hussein Shibli, co-chairman of the executive council of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES), were killed in a Turkish drone strike in the district of Kalar, Sulaimaniyah province.
The PKK, a Kurdish guerrilla force struggling for autonomy in Turkey, was formed in the late 1970s by Ocalan. The PKK, described by Turkey, the United States and the EU as a "terrorist" organisation, launched an armed struggle against the Turkish army in 1984, a conflict that killed at least 40,000 people, many of whom were civilians.