A vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (VBIED) detonated outside a restaurant in the Kurdish-controlled city of Qamishli (Al-Hasakah province) on Friday, October 11, killing at least three people and wounding nine others. Rescue teams are currently at the scene of the blast searching for additional dead and wounded. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. However, in a statement, Kurdish authorities said that the Islamic State (IS) group has increased its activity in the region since Turkey launched a military offensive into northern Syria on October 9.
A heightened security presence is expected in northeastern Syria over the coming days and weeks. Additional attacks cannot be ruled out.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced on October 5, that Turkey will launch a military operation in northeastern Syria in an attempt to expel Syrian Kurdish (People's Protection Units; YPG) forces from the Turkish border. Erdoğan stated that the air and ground operations will extend 30 km (19 mi) into Syria's northeastern border. Turkey considers the YPG to be a terrorist organization linked to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) group in Turkey.
The offensive comes days after US President Donald Trump announced a US military pullback in the region.
Due to extremely poor security conditions, Western governments generally advise against all travel to Syria, with some banning travel to the country. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to any travel to Syria.
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