Kobanî (also Kobanê, Arabic: كوباني, Classical Syriac: ܟܘܒܐܢܝ), officially Ayn al-Arab, is a city in the Kobani region of the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria. It lies on the border with Turkey.
Kobani was the place where the Rojava Revolution was first declared on 19 July, 2012.
In 2014, it was declared the administrative centre of the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria. It is in the Kobani Canton, which forms part of the Euphrates Region.
From September 2014 to January 2015, the city was under siege by Daesh [Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant]. Most of the city was destroyed and most of the population fled to Turkey. In 2015, the city was liberated by the People’s Protection Forces (YPG), despite most of the world expecting it to fall. Kobani is sometimes called “The Kurdish Stalingrad” because of this. Many of the refugees returned after the liberation and reconstruction began. Part of the city remains in rubble as an open air museum.
Prior to the Syrian Civil War, Kobanî was recorded as having a population of close to 45,000. The majority of inhabitants were Kurds, with Arab, Turkmen, and Armenian minorities.
Fouad Abdo is a farmer from the village of Batirzani, near the border wall that divides Rojava from Turkish-occupied Kurdish regions to the north. His small farm and the village are unusually green for this time of year in north-eastern Syria, thanks to a nearby freshwater spring. Just outside the village lies the melon patch where he was standing when he was attacked by Turkish border guards.
It is cities like Kobane or Qamishlo which are best known outside of Rojava as strongholds of the revolution, strung out along the heavily-mined border wall separating them from their sister cities in Turkish-occupied Kurdistan.
Thousands of decares of cultivated lands have been burned down by the Turkish state and their allied gangs in the last two months in the Kobane Canton. The vile attack against nature was documented by ANHA’s aerial photos.
Kobane Roots will plant 15,000 olive trees along the Euphrates and build an irrigation system.
In the predominantly Kurdish regions of Syria and Turkey, known respectively as Rojava and North Kurdistan, a groundbreaking experiment in communal living, social justice, and ecological vitality is taking place. Devastated by civil war, the Middle East is often seen as a place where little more than a cessation of hostilities can be hoped for. But Rojava and North Kurdistan have set their sights much higher. What started as a movement for political autonomy has blossomed into an attempt to build a radical pluralist democracy on the principles of communal solidarity — with food security, equality for women, and a localized, anti-capitalist economy at its core.
In Rojava, the significance of the co-operative system lies in efforts to democratise all sectors of society, including the economy. For this reason, creating alternative means and avenues that allow traditionally marginalised groups such as women to actively participate and engage with the market is an essential aspect of the radical democratic model.
It's been one year since the US bombing of Kobanê—then partly occupied by Daesh [ISIS/IS]—and most of the buildings are still in tatters. Kobanê is in Rojava (meaning 'West' in Kurdish), a Kurdish majority region in the north of Syria that declared autonomy from the Assad regime in 2012.