“We don’t face male violence here,” says Zeynep Siri, who lives in Jinwar village

Jinwar Women’s Village

JINWAR Free Women's Village is an ecological women's village in the heart of Rojava.

This report and video by Ebîr Muhemed were published by Jinha Women’s News Agency on 23 November, 2022

Zeynep Siri, one of the women who took shelter in the in Jinwar village due to the pressure and violence they faced, who has been living in the village for four years. “I have been realizing my dreams in the village. Women should stand against the slavery to free themselves. They should defend their rights,” she said.

Even though the forms of violence against women differ from each other according to the place they live, the effect of violence is same. Women, who have been subjected to economic, political, physical and psychological violence due to the patriarchal mentality, are trying to build their lives by standing against the violence against them. Women living in the Middle East are also subjected to all forms of violence. Jinwar village located in Northern and Eastern Syria is an important place for women, who are subjected to violence. The victims of the male-dominant system take shelter in the village and they have a communal life. The number of women, victims of violence, is very high in the village. 29-year-old Zeyneb Siri is one of these women. She is from the Yüksekova district of Hakkari province, Northern Kurdistan. She settled in the village four years ago.

She has lived in Jinwar village for four years

“I have had a nice life in this village with my son for four years. I love this village. We govern ourselves in the village. We meet our vital needs of life by farming. We have a medical center called Women’s Healing. We have a shop and bakery. I am a security member of the village and protect the village,” Zeyneb Siri told us.

“I had a challenging and bad life”

Before taking shelter in the village, Zeynep Siri was subjected to violence by her father and brothers. “I was forced into a marriage when I was 15 years old. I had a challenging and bad life. I always dreamed of a beautiful life due to the challenges I faced. I stayed in Maxmur for 10 years. Then, I decided to come to Rojava Kurdistan and settled in Jinwar village.”

“There is no male violence”

Zeynep Siri goes to school in the village. “I am both mother and father of my son. I stand on my own legs. I meet our needs. There is no male violence in the village. Many victims of male violence live in the village. We have a happy life together. My father didn’t allow me to go to school. He only allowed our brothers to go to school. I go to school in the village and learn Kurdish and Arabic. I want to improve myself and build a free life in the village,” she said.

“Women should empower themselves”

“When women are strong, they can protect themselves,” Zeynep Siri said, “Women should reject slavery and violence imposed on them. If they accept slavery, they will continue to face violence. Women don’t need men to maintain their lives. I can protect myself and people around me. When I listen to the stories of women living in the village, I understand why women should empower themselves. We do everything in the village and we don’t need any men.”

“Women should defend their rights”

Zeynep Siri rejected the violence against her, “They tried to impose pressure on me but I didn’t accept it and I will never accept it. I love this village very much because there are no men in this village. I want women to develop themselves and defend their rights. Women shouldn’t be killed anymore.”

The video below unfortunately does not contain English subtitles.