YJA Star announces death of guerrilla commander Leyla Sorxwîn in Besta

YJA Star announced the death of Leyla Sorxwîn. The long-time commander, who joined the Kurdish liberation movement in 1993, fell a martyr in resistance against the Turkish army in Besta region in North Kurdistan.

The Free Women's Troops (YJA Star) announced the loss of commander Leyla Sorxwîn. According to the statement released by the central headquarters of YJA Star on Wednesday, Leyla Sorxwîn was martyred in battle against the Turkish army in the northern Kurdish region of Besta on 22-23 January. During the two-day clashes in the course of a broad military operation in the province of Şırnak, seven members of a YJA-Star unit fell as martyrs.

The ID information of the YJA Star Commander is as follows:

Nom de Guerre: Leyla Sorxwîn

First-Last Name: Hamiyet Yalçınkaya

Birthplace: Amed

Mother’s-Father’s Name: Gulê – Kadir

Date and Place of Martyrdom: 23 January 2023 / Besta

Leyla Sorxwîn came from a family from Amed (Diyarbakır) deeply attached to the Kurdish cause and was a member of the Kurdish liberation movement for more than three decades. She belonged to the Central Committee of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and the Council of the Kurdistan Free Women's Party (PAJK) and was a member of the YJA Star Central Headquarters and People's Defence Forces (HPG) Command. She joined the PKK as a young woman in 1993 and was actively involved in the militant mobilisation of Kurdish women and the building of an autonomous women's guerrilla force in almost all parts of Kurdistan. She played a key role especially in the resistance stronghold of Botan, which is also considered the centre of women's militancy.

YJA Star described Leyla Sorxwîn as a great personality whose character formed a unity with the paradigm of a society based on women's liberation, democracy and ecology proclaimed by Abdullah Öcalan. She played a leading role in important PKK advances, including the June offensive in 2004. After Öcalan's abduction to Turkey in 1999 and the subsequent attempts to destroy the Kurdish liberation movement from within and without, the offensive of 1 June 2004 represented an important liberation blow. Leyla Sorxwîn took a pioneering role in this advance, which marked a significant turning point in the history of the freedom struggle in Kurdistan.

In addition, Leyla Sorxwîn led the "revolutionary people's war" in Northern Kurdistan. "From Amed to Rojhilat, from Gare to Zagros, she left her mark in the guerrilla struggle and was also active in all other levels of resistance. Comrade Leyla never kept herself within the boundaries of the given order at any point of her life. With all her heart she believed in the ideology of women's liberation. In her, the reality of development, empowerment, consciousness-raising and emancipation of Kurdish women became concrete. She was a selfless, courageous friend and companion, had an unshakeable loyalty to her principles, loved people and life, her enthusiasm was contagious. She was always a thinker and mentor to her comrades," stated YJA Star.

At the end of 2017, Leyla Sorxwîn returned to Botan and took the place of Delal Amed (Hülya Eroğlu), who had died shortly before in Besta, in the regional command of the guerrilla structures there. She was an important player in the new and restructuring process of the guerrillas in northern Kurdistan, especially in the area of the PKK's women's army, and participated in various successful offensives against the Turkish army.

YJA Star described Leyla Sorxwîn as an incomparable commander who dedicated every moment of her existence to the liberation of the Kurdish people. "It is with love, respect and gratitude that we remember Leyla Sorxwîn and extend our condolences to her family and the patriotic public. In the person of all Besta martyrs, we promise to achieve our revolutionaries' ideal of a free Kurdistan."