Swedish MPs: Afrin should be returned to its true owners

Social Democratic Workers’ Party MP Kadir Kasirga and Left Party MP Amineh Kakabaveh said Turkey should withdraw from the occupied Afrin and the district should be returned to its true owners.

Social Democratic Workers’ Party MP Kadir Kasirga said the people of Afrin have been forced to abandon their lands and homes to migrate into camps in the one year since Turkey and its allied gangs invaded Afrin.


Kasirga said the Turkish state aims for ethnic cleansing in Afrin and added: “Kurds’ homes and lands were confiscated, and jihadists were placed in their stead. Olive groves have been pillaged. Afrin must be returned to its true owners who were forced to migrate. If Turkey continues the occupation of Afrin for too much longer, that would constitute a crime in international law. According to the United Nations, Afrin is Syrian territory. If Turkey has a military presence there, build Turkish schools and institutions and settle people brought from elsewhere in the district, that would constitute ethnic cleansing and the de-Kurdification of Afrin.”


Kasirga said Turkey invaded Afrin, which was the most peaceful province in Syria and where Kurds were organized: “This is not like other residential areas. Equality, children’s rights, minority rights and other such concepts the state failed to instill for years had been achieved in Afrin. There was a working system. Most interestingly, there haven’t been any attacks or threats against Turkey from Afrin. But the Turkish state targeted institutions built by the YPG/YPJ. The silence of the outside world and Russia’s approval led to Turkey invading the district.”

When asked what the Swedish government is doing to stop the occupation of Afrin, Kasirga said: “Sweden called on the United Nations Security Council to convene. We protested Turkey’s invasion and we issued a condemnation. Sweden is one of the countries that objected the strongest to the invasion of Afrin. There were no others that were stricter.”


Left Party MP Amineh Kakabaveh said in the one year since the invasion of Afrin, the Turkish state and their allied gangs have pillaged through the district, stolen the olives which were the main livelihood of the people and sold them off.

Kakabaveh said if the Turkish state’s theft and sale of the olives can be documented, Turkey will need to be boycotted and pointed to the similarities between Afrin and Western Sahara:


“Products from Western Sahara are boycotted because Morocco has occupied and pillaged the region. Afrin is under pressure from both the Syrian state and the invading Turkish state. Afrin must not be allowed to turn into another Sahara. Turkey must know that we won’t be silent in the face of what they did in Afrin.”

Kakabaveh pointed out that Turkey has intensified the preparations for a full on invasion after the US announced they will be withdrawing from Northern Syria and added: “But this decision to withdraw was met with opposition even among the Trump administration. France announced that they would be sending troops to the region, but none of this says anything about what the status of the Kurds will be there.”


Kakabaveh protested the fact that despite the YPG/YPJ and the Kurdish people neutralizing ISIS gangs through great sacrifice, the coalition against ISIS doesn’t speak of autonomy or a status for the Kurds: “I believe the only solution for stability in the region is the recognition of autonomy for the Kurds.”

Kakabaveh said if a status is determined for Kurds, Turkey would not dare attack Rojava.

Kakabaveh said the Kurds need to demand that the US and other countries in the coalition against ISIS guarantee the autonomy of Rojava and continued: “Until democratic elections can be held in Syria, a status for Kurds needs to be determined and their lands need to be protected against outside attacks.”

Kakabaveh said Turkey’s proposed safe zone aims to prevent Kurdish gains and added: “Kurds governing themselves along with other peoples in the region is the most suitable solution.”


Kakabaveh had submitted a written proposal for the Swedish Parliament and stated that the democratic system in Rojava poses a model for the future of Syria, demanding that the Parliament issue a decision to recognize the administration in Rojava.