At about 4:15 p.m. on October 13, a Turkish air strike hit a civilian convoy carrying local and foreign journalists that was traveling between the northern Syrian towns of Qamishli and Ras al-Ain, according to Cira TV Director Zanar Jafr, who spoke to CPJ via messaging app. Mohammed Hussein Rasho, a Syrian Kurdish reporter and cameraman for Cira TV, was injured in the blast and died of his wounds the following day, according to Jafr.
Syrian Kurdish journalist Saad Ahmed, a reporter for the local news agency Hawar News, had died of his wounds shortly after the strike, and three other journalists, including Rasho, were injured, according to Jafr and CPJ reporting. The blast killed 15 civilians, including the two journalists, according to the London-based human rights organization Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
Rasho, 23, was moved to a hospital in the northeastern Syrian city of Al-Hasakah following the attack, where he received treatment but died on October 14, Jafr said.
Jafr sent a photo to CPJ showing Rasho being dragged away from a burning vehicle with blood visible on his right arm and leg, and on the right side of his face. The journalist had “sustained wounds all over his body,” Jafr said.
A report by France 2 TV said that the convoy was escorted by the Syrian Democratic Forces, a coalition of militias led by security forces loyal to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party. Cira TV is a Yazidi broadcaster that is supportive of that party, according to CPJ’s review of its broadcasts. Rasho had worked there for about two months, Jafr said.
Ras al-Ain has seen intense fighting between Turkish and Syrian Kurdish forces since Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan launched an offensive into Syrian on October 9, according to news reports.