The White House says a large-scale counterterrorism operation by U.S. forces in Syria has killed ISIS leader Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi. Witnesses said the two-hour assault by U.S. special forces and helicopter gunships on the village of Atmeh near the Turkish border left 13 people dead, including six children and four women, with body parts scattered near the site of the assault.
This follows massive airstrikes carried out by Turkey in northern Iraq and Syria. Turkey’s defense minister said the bombings targeted members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, known as the PKK, as well as the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia, both of which Turkey claims are terrorist groups. One Turkish air raid that destroyed an electric power station in northern Syria also injured nearby civilians.
Othman Hussein Suleiman: “I was inside having dinner. Then I headed out for tea. Then I heard the sound of a warplane and ran to tell my colleagues. And I don’t know what happened next. All I remember is that I heard the sound of two explosions.”
Kurdish forces said the U.S.-backed coalition opened an airspace corridor for Turkey to bomb northeastern Syria. Meanwhile, Iraqi security forces condemned the airstrikes as a violation of Iraqi airspace.