HPG pays tribute to guerrillas who fell as martyrs in Heskîf

The HPG has published information about the guerrillas who fell as martyrs in a Turkish army military operation in Heskîf district last week.

The Press Center of the People's Defense Forces (HPG) has published a statement for the guerrillas who fell as martyrs on Wednesday in the course of a Turkish military operation in Heskîf district. "On 19 June 2024, in clashes with the enemy, our comrades in the Mawa area of ​​Botan, Axîn and Şervan, were killed." The HPG expressed their condolences to the relatives and the people of Kurdistan, and provided the following information about the martyrs:

 Code name: Axîn Gabar

 First and last name: Zeynep Özkan

 Place of birth: Şirnex

 Names of mother and father: Emine – Abdullah

 Date and place of death: June 19, 2024 / Botan

 Code name: Şervan Botan

 First and last name: Şakir Erdemci

 Place of birth: Mersin

 Names of mother and father: Hatun – Sadullah

 Date and place of death: June 19, 2024 / Botan

Axîn Gabar

Axîn Gabar's family comes from the village of Bana in Şirnex-Basa (Şırnak-Güçlükonak), while she herself was born in Cizre. Bana, like thousands of other Kurdish villages, was destroyed in 1993. Because the family refused to join the Turkish state as "village guards", they had to leave their homeland and move to Cizre. There, too, they continued to face repression. Axîn's childhood was marked by state oppression. Close relatives of hers who had joined the guerrillas in the 1990s were killed in battle. They were the heroes of her childhood.

As a teenager, she went to Bana for the first time and met the guerrillas there. After this encounter, she supported the guerrillas in the region for a long time as a militia member. Because of her activities, she was arrested, but was able to withstand the pressure. Very soon she wanted to join the guerrillas herself and brought up this wish several times. Because of her successful work in the militia, her joining was repeatedly postponed until a later date. During this time, she mentally and emotionally said goodbye to a life within the existing system. It was in 2014 that she went to the mountains and became a guerrilla.

After a short stay in the mountains in Botan, Axîn came to the Medya Defense Areas for basic training. At the time, she said that she found herself and discovered her identity as a woman in the guerrilla. She spent a while in Gare and then five years in Qendîl, where she took on various tasks and worked in the structures of the KJK (Community of Women of Kurdistan). This enabled her to deepen her ideological knowledge and follow the development of the Kurdish women's movement directly.

In 2019, Axîn took an ideological and military course at the Haki Karer Academy and then went to Heftanîn to take part in the resistance against the Turkish occupation attacks. She fought in Xantûr and other areas and took on great responsibility after the partial occupation of the region. After further training at the women's academy "Şehîd Berîtan", she was transferred to Botan at her own suggestion, where she fought resolutely for the freedom of all oppressed peoples and women until the end as a militant of the YJA Star.

Şervan Botan

Şervan Botan was born in Mersin. His parents, who came from Sêrt-Dih (Siirt-Eruh), had to leave Kurdistan due to state oppression. He grew up aware of his Kurdish identity and experienced one of his first conflicts with the Turkish state in elementary school because he was not allowed to speak his mother tongue.

At a young age, he developed sympathy for the Kurdistan freedom movement and became politically active. As part of his commitment, he also took on conspiratorial tasks that required great discipline. After the death of the guerrilla commander Numan Amed (Ertem Karabulut), who was killed in Amed in 2012 and whom he had met personally, Şervan decided to take up armed struggle. Because he had previously taken on strategically important tasks, he had to postpone joining the guerrillas, and continued to work in the cities of Turkey and Northern Kurdistan. It was not until 2014, during the ISIS attacks on Rojava and Shengal, that he went into the mountains in Amed.

After a short stay with the guerrillas in Amed, Şervan came to Metîna for basic training, where he stayed for a year in practice. He quickly developed into a capable fighter and was transferred to Botan at his own request in 2015. During this time, the Turkish state ended negotiations on a peaceful solution to the Kurdistan question and started a new campaign of annihilation against the Kurdish freedom movement. Şervan took part in the resistance in Gabar, Cûdî, Besta, Wan, Kato and other areas and led a breathless fight.

After several years, Şervan returned to the Medya Defense Areas and had the opportunity at the Şehîd-Îbrahîm Academy to evaluate his previous practice and reflect on his own weaknesses and mistakes. He studied Abdullah Öcalan's analyses in depth and gained new ideological perspectives. He then continued his fight in Botan.

The HPG wrote that Şervan Botan fought under the most difficult circumstances and left an indelible mark with his self-sacrificing, modest and mature personality.