HPG pays tribute to guerrillas Bêrîtan Şemsê and Garzan Tolhildan

Guerrillas Bêrîtan Şemsê and Garzan Tolhildan were killed in an attack by Turkish occupation forces in the Zap region. The HPG paid tribute their struggle and expressed their condolences to their families and the Kurdish people.

The People's Defense Forces (HPG) have announced the deaths of two guerrillas in Zap. Bêrîtan Şemsê and Garzan Tolhildan were killed in an attack by the Turkish army in South Kurdistan in March, according to a statement published by the HPG. The attack by the Turkish troops was directed against the guerrilla tunnels on the western front of the region of Zap. The HPG paid tribute to the fallen guerrillas who took part in the resistance for freedom and expressed their condolences to the bereaved families and the people of Kurdistan.

 Code name: Bêrîtan Şemsê

 First and last name: Zeynep Yakut

 Place of birth: Batman-Elih

 Parents' names: Nihan – Abdulkerim

 Date and place of death: March 9, 2024, Girê Amêdî / Zap

 Codename: Garzan Tolhildan

 First and last name: Garzan Şêx

 Place of birth: Kobanê

 Parents' names: Ayşe – Mihemed

 Date and place of death: March 9, 2024, Girê Amêdî / Zap

Bêrîtan Şemsê

Bêrîtan Şemsê was born in the northern Kurdish province of Batman (Êlih) as the daughter of a family close to the liberation struggle. She joined the PKK in 2014 because she saw Abdullah Öcalan's paradigm as an alternative to a free life, the HPG wrote in its statement. She spent her first years with the guerrillas in Heftanin, where she deepened her political and ideological knowledge and learned military skills. She became part of the Free Women’s Units (YJA Star), and took part in various offensives against the Turkish occupation until 2018. She then devoted herself to specialized military training as part of the restructuring of guerrilla warfare. She stayed in Avaşîn for a while, but moved relatively quickly to Metîna, where she was deployed for three years.

After her time in Metîna, Bêrîtan Şemsê went to the Academy of Free Women. There she dealt intensively with the liberation paradigm of the women's party PAJK, which is more than just an ideology or strategy, but rather a whole way of thinking, observing, experiencing and analyzing, and conceptualizing the truth. At her own request, she was deployed to the Western Front in the Zap region following this training phase. There she played a formative role in the tunnel war and took part in various extremely successful guerrilla operations against the Turkish army. Her last post was the Girê Amêdî resistance area.

Garzan Tolhildan

Garzan Tolhildan came from the western Kurdish resistance stronghold of Kobanê. He grew up in a family environment linked to the PKK and its liberation struggle and witnessed the emergence of the Rojava Revolution as a child. He later witnessed the Turkish-orchestrated attack by the terrorist militia Islamic State on his hometown and the resistance that the population put up together with the YPG and YPJ in Kobanê. He lost his father in one of the massacres carried out by the Islamic organization.

Shaped by this tragedy, Garzan Tolhildan joined the guerrillas in 2017. He received support in this step from his mother. He went to Gare, where he received his first military and ideological training. Over time, he acquired special guerrilla tactics through his practice and further training programs, which he used in the Zap region from 2018 onwards. He fought in Zap for three years before moving to Avaşîn and taking part in the Werxelê resistance there. He later returned to the Zap region, and helped expand the tunnels and fought on the front line.

Like Bêrîtan Şemsê, Garzan Tolhildan was also part of the units that played a key role in shaping the underground war and also struck on the ground in revolutionary guerrilla operations. The statement said: "As HPG, we promise to fulfill the desire of Hevala Bêrîtan and Hevalê Garzan for a free Kurdistan. Our fight will continue until our homeland and our people are liberated."