QAMISHLI, Syria — A female Kurdish fighter carried out what appeared to be a suicide bombing attack on the Turkish military in Syria, destroying a tank and killing several Turkish soldiers with a grenade, Kurdish forces in the area said on Sunday.
If confirmed, it would be the first case of a suicide attack by the Kurds against Turkey’s forces in Syria since its ground troops crossed the border earlier this month.
The Kurdish bomber, identified as Zuluh Hemo, 20, had fought under the nom de guerre Avesta Habur, according to a statement from her military organization, the Women’s Protection Units, or Y.P.J., which is part of the Syrian Democratic Forces.
The S.D.F. is an important ally of the United States military in the battle against the Islamic State in northern Syria. A suicide bombing by an American ally against a NATO member could further strain the tense relationship between Turkey and the United States.
The independent Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that the attack, which took place on Saturday, killed two Turkish soldiers after Ms. Hemo threw a grenade down the turret of the tank. The organization’s director, Rami Abdulrahman, said he did not believe it was a deliberate suicide attack.
Ms. Hemo’s own unit refrained from calling her a suicide attacker in its statement but said that “the heroine Avesta attacked the tank and blew herself up with the tank.” It also called her “a model of free Kurdish women,” likening her to other Kurdish suicide bombers.