Defend International (DI) has launched a worldwide campaign titled “Save Rojava: The World Has To Act Now” to raise awareness about the impacts of Turkey’s invasion of Rojava (Northeastern Syria) on civilians and to call on the International community to intervene.
“We appeal to American leaders and to the leaderships of the European Union and NATO to stop Turkey and prevent a new humanitarian crisis in Rojava. We specifically ask the President of France to intervene, we remind him of the work done by France in 1991 when the Kurds in Kurdistan region (North Iraq) were in a similar tragic situation in the hands of Saddam’s regime,” said Dr. Widad Akreyi, co-founder of Defend International.
The campaign will be modified regularly to reflect any changes on the ground.
Save Rojava: The World Has To Act Now
09 October 2019
Defend International (DI) is hereby announcing the launch of the worldwide campaign “Save Rojava: The World Has To Act Now” to raise awareness about the impacts of Turkey’s invasion of Rojava on civilians and to call on the International community to intervene. DI urges other NGOs to echo similar calls and we welcome sponsorships.
The campaign will pursue several, interrelated objectives, including:
- Coordinating activities related to raising awareness about the tragic consequences of Turkey’s invasion of Rojava on the civilians and their living conditions;
- Coordinating (lobbying and other) activities related to intensifying the efforts aimed at ending the invasion as soon as possible;
- Providing a platform for discussion and the exchange of information on matters and activities relevant to securing the fundamental rights of the refugees and residents of Rojava;
- Keeping up efforts to improve focus;
- Building a bridge between potential partners and communities whose work is relevant to the campaign, including individuals, groups (e.g., artists, songwriters, singers, intellectuals, youth), communities, and organisations active in the areas of peace-building, inter alia, as well as actors involved in ending armed conflicts and violence against women and girls in times of war; and
- If needed, assisting the UN and other partners to prepare for regional or local meetings focusing on selected aims of this campaign.
“We are alarmed by Turkey’s decision to expand its invasion of Afrin to the rest of Rojava,” said Dr. Widad Akreyi, co-founder of Defend International on 07 October 2019. “This is not a military operation. It will be a continuation of the 2014 campaign aimed to ethnically and religiously cleanse our region.”
The campaign will be inclusive, informal, and pragmatic. Participation is open to organisations and associations that are willing to endorse the objectives mentioned above.
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Major Campaign Updates/Outcomes
- On 07 October 2019, Dr. Widad Akreyi, co-founder of Defend International, called on the United Nations and the the internal community to save Rojava and its citizens from Turkey’s possible aggression.
- Dr. Widad also appealed to the American leaders and to the leaderships of the European Union and NATO to stop Turkey and prevent a new humanitarian crisis in Rojava. She specifically asked the President of France to intervene, reminding him that the Turkish aggression will likely lead to the re-emergence of ISIS and possibly to increased terror attacks in the west. Consequently, on 16 October 2019, the House condemned Mr. Trump’s Syria withdrawal. Voting 354 to 60, the lawmakers approved a non-binding resolution opposing the move . On 21 October 2019, Germany Foreign Minister Heiko Maas described the Turkish offensive against the Kurds as “invasion” & said that Berlin saw it as illegitimate.
- On 10 October 2019, Dr. Widad sent a message to President Donald Trump, in which she highlighted that the Kurds, in collaboration with the Coalition to Defeat ISIS, have been “defending not just Kurds, but also Christians, Yazidis… in fact the entire humanity against ISIS and its allies.”
- On 14 October 2019, two days after the brutal murder of women’s rights leader, Hevrin Khalaf, and her driver by Turkey-backed jihadists, Dr. Widad reached out to Western media and women’s rights advocates, demanding them to cover Hevrin’s tragic case. Thanks to the overwhelming support, our campaign gained steam. Many media outlets, individuals and organisations stepped forward to defend Ms. Khalaf.
- On 15 October 2019, Dr. Widad raised awareness about the humanitarian catastrophe faced in Kobane, where more families were forced to leave their homes and flee with no food or water, nothing but fear. Babies were starving, they had no milk.
On Twitter and Facebook: #SaveRojava #WeWantPeace #DrWidad #SOSRojava #NoFlyZone4Rojava #SaveKobane