Turkey continues to attack Kobani’s women-led reconstruction

November 3, 2023
YPJ drives ISIS out of Kobani
Members of the Women's Protection Units (YPJ) celebrate their victory over ISIS at Kobani, on January 26, 2015.

Kurdish women and women from other peoples of northern Syria have built communal villages, cooperatives and educational institutes in Kobani (Kobanê), but they continue to face attacks nine years after the Islamic State (ISIS) launched its assault on the symbolic town, Peoples’ Equality and Democracy Party (HEDEP) Women’s Assemblies Speaker Halide Türkoğlu said on November 1, World Kobanê Day.

Kobani is the site of a “legendary resistance against ISIS”, where women’s solidarity broke through borders and established a new life, she said.

“While the reconstruction continues in every area, the [Turkish] government, that cannot tolerate this victory, continues to bomb this town, in their never-ending hatred and animosity against the peoples of Kobani,” Türkoğlu added.

“They bomb civilian settlements to depopulate the area. The women and all peoples of Kobani continue to resist the government’s attacks while they build their new lives.”

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government in Turkey “steals from (Turkey’s) women for more bombs against the women of Kobani,” she said.

The new model implemented in Kobani has created a new joint resistance for those who “insist on living together”, Türkoğlu said. “Kobani is proof that an equal, just and common life is possible together with all its diversity.”

While the autonomous administration in northern Syria is led by a Kurdish majority, the project aims to give equal representation and voice to all ethnicity and faith groups living in the area, including Turkmens, Arabs, Armenians and Syriacs.

“No power, no tank, no weapon is strong enough to tear down this revolution that was built with such strife,” Türkoğlu said, calling on all women to come together against Turkey’s attacks in the region.

The new model implemented in Kobani has created a new joint resistance for those who “insist on living together”, Türkoğlu said.

HEDEP’s co-chairs Tülay Hatimoğulları and Tuncer Bakırhan released a joint statement for the day in Kurdish, Turkish and Arabic, saluting “humanity’s victory against the darkness of ISIS in Kobani”.

“We know that the attacks on the lands of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) aim to finish what ISIS failed to do. We will never give up solidarity with the peoples of Rojava, where a common and democratic life is flowering,” they said, by Rojava referring to a 35‒40 mile [56‒65 kilometre] strip in northern Syria along the border with Turkey.

“International solidarity from the peoples of the world with the Kobani Resistance gives light to our today and tomorrow. Happy World Kobanê Day to the Kurdish people and all of the oppressed of the world.”

Turkey’s most recent offensive against the region was launched after an attack against the central police headquarters in the capital Ankara. While the Turkish government maintains that the attackers received training in Kurdish-held Syrian territory, the Kurdish authorities have denied any involvement.

The Turkish attacks deliberately target civilian infrastructure and have damaged vital power and water stations serving the region, affecting some five million civilians.

[Reposted from MedyaNews.]

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