Two civilians killed, 84 kidnapped in Afrin in September

The human rights organization of Afrin registered 84 abductions by occupying forces in September, and only fourteen of those kidnapped have been released so far. On the other hand, three minors were married to Islamists.

Even two and a half years after the occupation of Afrin in northwestern Syria by Turkey and jihadist militias, excessive violence, looting and expulsions continue to be on the agenda in the formerly self-governing canton. These are the findings of a monthly report by the Human Rights Organization of Afrin. The balance sheet of human rights violations recorded in September was presented on Sunday at the Serdem Camp in the Shehba canton. The contents of the report are; two civilians killed, including a child, over eighty abducted, and three minors married to Islamist mercenaries against the will of their families.

Of at least 84 civilians abducted in Afrin in the previous month, only fourteen have been released so far - against payment of ransom. Eight of them are women, and one child has also been released. The occupation forces, controlled by Ankara, use the kidnappings to extort ransom money. The method has become a lucrative source of income for the militias.

The ecological destruction of Afrin also continues unabated. According to the report, the olives of the people of Afrin, and thus the income they generate, were confiscated in seven different regions through the seizure of about 700 trees. In two districts of the canton, forest fires were set and four archaeological cultural assets were looted. However, the report does not mention which historical sites are involved.

The houses and property of the remaining Kurdish inhabitants of Afrin are also looted generously by the occupation troops. The compulsory tax of the Sharia promotes the impoverishment of the civilian population.

As demographic change and the cultural destruction and assimilation that goes along with it also continue; the Kurdish population is meant to be completely driven out of the region.

The Meydanke intersection in Afrin city was renamed as "Artgel”.

The Afrin region was a pioneer in education in Kurdish. Kurdish literary schools, institutes and the first Kurdish university had been opened there. The Arab and Aramaic-speaking population was also given the opportunity to participate in education based on the democratic nation and the fraternity of peoples. With the occupation, this situation has changed drastically. Today Turkish is the only language of education in the schools of Afrin. Turkey uses Turkish educational material in the schools, in classrooms hang pictures of the Turkish dictator Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Administratively, Afrin is treated as a district of the southern Turkish province of Hatay, which was annexed to Turkey by France 81 years ago.

Over 370 bombings in one month

In villages in the Shera and Sherawa districts of Afrin, not completely occupied by Turkey, human rights activists registered a total of 377 bombings in September. As usual, the attacks were carried out with mortars, artilleries and missiles.