Women from Afrin have organized in Shehba too

Leyla Ibisim from the Berxwedan Camp Kongreya Star Coordination stated that the women crossing into Shehba from Afrin have organized themselves in a short time and won’t accept surrender.

Women who were forced to migrate to the Shehba area after the Turkish army and their allied gangs invaded Afrin continue their resistance in camps and villages in Shehba.

Leyla Ibisim from the Berxwedan Camp Kongreya Star Coordination spoke about the women of Afrin’s resistance in Shehba and in camps. Ibisim said the women of Afrin didn’t disperse like thousands of others throughout Syria due to their strong organizations as women, and added that Syrian women have been subjected to horrible atrocities, including being sold in the camps they sought refuge in. Ibisim said the women of Rojava have it different: “The women of Rojava were already organized. They were aware of their own truth. They knew their own strength. Of course they had reached that through the philosophy of Leader Apo. We drew our strength from Leader Apo’s philosophy. He showed us the way to organize ourselves. He taught us that society can’t be free until women are free. The women of Rojava have taken Leader Apo’s principle of ‘women’s freedom is society’s freedom’ into heart and are organized.”


Ibisim gave the women of Afrin as an example: “We migrated from Afrin and came all the way to here. If we didn’t have a strong organization as women, we’d have dispersed and got lost like thousands of other women in Syria. Our organization and our unity allowed us to regroup. We the women defended each other. If the women of Rojava didn’t fall or break, it’s because they grew with the philosophy of Leader Apo. The women of Afrin have risen up. It was the women who never accepted surrender and resisted to the end during the Afrin resistance, they never surrendered.”


Ibisim said leaving Afrin was not easy and she saw the pain in every mother’s and every child’s eyes on the day they left Afrin: “When you turn back and look, you see your lands, your city being pillaged. It was like our land was calling for us. It was very difficult to leave it behind.”


Ibisim pointed out that it was the women who first got themselves together and formed organizations again once they reached Shehba, and added that they have built their own system. Ibisim said women took women’s organization and defense above all in Afrin and continued to do so in Shehba: “Because when you defend women, you defend all of the society. Of course there were great pains that women were going through. We stood by every woman who was suffering and shared her pain.”


Ibisim said the thing women value and stress the most now in Shehba is women’s education: “Because when a woman is educated, when she knows her own reality, when she takes part in politics, she can defend herself. First we formed our own communes in Shehba. In these communes we formed our committees for justice, defense and education. We the women started our own education. Today what our enemies want to do the most is to disperse our camps, so we are trying to strengthen our organization and unity in our own camps. The stronger our organization, the weaker the enemy will be to attack.”

Leyla Ibisim from the Berxwedan Camp Kongreya Star Coordination said they developed projects in the camp for women to work and support their own family: “As women, we will never give up on our organization. It is our only goal to reach all women everywhere, and organize them. If we can do this, we can also save the women under occupation in Afrin.”