It is impossible to pass through places like Raqqa, Minbic or Kobane without confronting the reality of war, among the destroyed buildings but at the same time, the rebuilding of the cities that is still in progress. The destruction caused is still visible, but besides the fact of the destruction, what influenced me during the days of our tour to get to know Rojava, was how much the energy of this youth overflowed. This is what enchanted me the most.
Let’s reflect on the great achievements of the Rojava revolution in north and east Syria in the face of great adversity: the unification of communities deliberately divided on the basis of religion and ethnicity by dictatorial states and the Islamic fundamentalist terrorist movements alike; the liberation and empowerment of women in the face of the reactionary rollbacks imposed by the later; the embryonic attempts to reorganise the economy on a cooperative and ecologically sustainable basis; and the establishment of inclusive grassroots democracy based on the democratic confederalist ideas developed by long-imprisoned Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan.
Ever since devastating twin earthquakes hit Turkey and Syria on the night of 5-6 February killing over 50,000 people and displacing millions, the world’s attention has once again returned to the Turkey-Syria border. A catastrophe for all affected, it has been intensified for Kurds in Turkey and the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria
The earthquake survivors in Semsûr have established neighborhood commissions to support and be in solidarity with each other. The aim of the commissions is to build a communal life.
The Maras-centered earthquakes destroyed more than a hundred buildings in Syria and Rojava. 3,581 people lost their lives and 5,348 were injured. Thousands are still under the rubble in the Turkish-occupied areas as the death toll is not disclosed.
The HDP’s strength lies in its ability to mobilise and organise its large network of supporters and sympathisers and like-minded community organisations. As soon as they heard about the earthquake, the party dropped all other plans, set up a central coordination centre, and dispatched leading members to the affected area. Local election centres were transformed into coordination centres, while the youth organisation concentrated on rescue work. They put out calls for solidarity and for people with shelter and food to share with those without, and they helped create a framework to allow people’s natural solidarity to find direction.
Immediately after the February 6 earthquake, one of the biggest in the history of Turkey, a broad meeting of Ecology Organizations in Turkey published this statement.
This is an edited down version of an info session and phone bank with a representative of Rojava's cooperative movement, with a short intro to Rojava and its cooperatives by Emre Şahin of the Emergency Committee for Rojava, on 10 December, 2022
Civil Diplomacy Center in NES launches an appeal for solidarity with North and East Syria, and a call to break the international silence regarding the Turkish aggression and to stand together against Turkey’s occupation policies.
We call up on you to defend Rojava! We call you to raise your voices and actions, to organize and to connect with each other. We call up on you to support us in solidarity and spread the word.
Let’s build an international front fighting for climate-justice! Rojava can be a role model for humanity to save mother earth. Let’s stand up for it together!
Jinwar is a village made by women for women in Rojava.
The Syria sanctions were relaxed on November 26, 2021, when the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the US Department of Treasury issued a new amendment to the Syria sanctions. OFAC Amendment to General License, CFR Section 542.516 relaxes the existing sanctions to allow nonprofit organizations (also called NGOs) to conduct new transactions to meet humanitarian needs.