The Afrin resistance continues in Shehba

Afrin located near the border with Turkey and northwest of the city of Aleppo was a mostly Kurdish-populated city, but displaced Arabs, Turkmens and Yazidis also moved in seeking shelter from war.

The people of Afrin, who resisted the attacks launched by the invading Turkish state and its mercenary allies for 58 days, had eventually to leave their lands. The people of Afrin, who have been in the Shehba since 16 March 2018, continue to resist.

The decision to evacuate the city of Afrin on 16 March 2018 was taken by the Afrin Autonomous Administration and YPG Command to avoid the risk that the Turkish state invasion attacks, which had already gone on for 58 days, ended in a genocide attack. 

The Afrin administration stated that their resistance will not stop in a press conference they held in Shehba on 18 March 2018.

Since that day, the people have been struggling in Shehba vowing to go back to their lands, while the Afrin Liberation Forces are making life hard for the Turkish army and mercenaries.

On 20 January 2018 at 4 pm, Turkish military warplanes began their occupation attacks by targeting civilians, historical sites and public buildings in Afrin. 

Faced with the great resistance of YPG, YPJ and Afrin people, the Turkish state deliberately bombed the settlements and slaughtered hundreds of civilians, including women and children.

In the first month of the attacks, 27 children, 21 women, 176 civilians fell martyrs while 448 civilians were injured.

In the second month of the resistance, 232 children, 29 women and 29 women, were killed and 668 civilians injured by the invading Turkish state.

Since the invasion and genocide attacks, hundreds of thousands of people from Afrin and Shehba, Northern and Eastern Syria, and hundreds of thousands of people from all over the world have been protesting the invasion carried out by the Turkish state.

The people also reiterated their determination to liberate Afrin.

Afrin located near the border with Turkey and northwest of the city of Aleppo was a mostly Kurdish-populated city, but displaced Arabs, Turkmens and Yazidis also moved in seeking shelter from war.

Although the Afrin administration was not involved in the civil war launched against Bashar al-Assad in 2011, it later joined the Northern Syrian Democratic Federation. Turkey's President Erdoğan has been working hard and has been deeply involved in the Syrian war, to destroy this multiethnic and democratic process and the social order created by this federation.”

The call continued: “Turkey invaded Afrin and as a consequence the population of the city and the refugees who had find shelter there were forced to flee.

The occupation and attacks of the Turkish state against Afrin violate both international laws and the sovereignty of Syria."

5 refugee camps set up

Serdem, Afrin and Veger refugee camps followed the set up of the first, Berxwedan Camp. In addition, there is Shehba Camp, which was opened in 2016.

The people, who established their own commune and council system in these camps, also continued their education in tent schools.

In Berxwedan Camp there are 775 tents (one family in each tent), for a total of 2,650 people. In addition, the camp has its own assembly and 14 communes affiliated to it.

In Serdem there are 760 tents and 3,100 people. This camp also has an assembly and 11 communes affiliated to it.

In Veger, established in the village of Zyaret in Shêrewa, there are 140 tents and 103 people live there. They have a commune.

Afrin and Shehba camps have a commune each.

Over 175,000 people living in Shehba

The people of Afrin reorganized themselves in Shehba. They established communes and councils in a very short time and re-opened institutions such as schools, hospitals and municipalities and demonstrated their capacity to organise once more.

In total, over 175,000 refugees from Afrin live in the regions of Shehba and Shêrewa. Most of them were setteled in Tıl Rıfat, Fafin, Ehrez districts and villages in Shehba and Aqibe, Zyaret and Dırcemil villages in Shêrewa.

Education and schooling in Shehba

Despite great difficulties the people of Afrin, put education on top of their agenda ans set up schools in tents to ensure children from Afrin could continue their education.

KPC-Democratic, who initially provided schooling in tent camps, continued to provide education in ruined houses and schools in villages.

Primary, secondary and high school education in both camps and villages is given in three languages, Kurdish, Arabic and English.

Currently, there are 66 schools in the Shehba area and 16,474 students receive education in these schools.

In addition, 906 teachers work in these KPC-Democratic schools. At the same time, students who have completed high school continue their education at the university in the Jazira District.

Attacks on Shehba

While the people of Afrin were trying to live under difficult conditions, on the other hand, they were constantly active against the invasion attacks carried out by the Turkish state.

The refugees organise marches, rallies and demos on a daily basis. The invading Turkish state continue to attack the people of Afrin in Shehba, repeatedly bombing civilian areast. So far, the Turkish government has bombed the Shehba area 103 times. In these attacks, a total of 41 civilians were killed and 78 people were seriously injured.

'We will liberating Afrin'

The youth of Afrin promised to liberate Afrin to the people who were forced to leave the city. They organized themselves under the name of Olive Wrath Action Room, and carried out effective actions against the occupiers.

Then, on 21 December 2018, they organized themselves in the Afrin Liberation Forces (HRE) and resist the occupation.

The HRE has carried out some 253 actions in 2019 which resulted in the death of 621 Turkish soldiers, mercenaries and MIT personnel and the wounding of 455 Turkish soldiers, mercenaries and MIT personnel.