‘We will create a free life, a free country and free women’

At a YJA Star celebration on International Women's Day, guerrilla commander Arjîn Dêrsîm appealed to young women to defend themselves against the attacks on their bodies and spirits and to join the fight for freedom.


The online portal Gerîla TV published footage of an event to mark International Women's Day on March 8 in the mountains of Kurdistan. The video shows the preparations for the celebration in a tunnel facility, after which Arjîn Dêrsîm from the Command Council of YJA Star (Free Women's Troops) gives a speech to female guerrilla fighters.

Arjîn Dêrsîm described March 8 as a day of resistance, struggle and self-empowerment for women and quoted PKK founder Abdullah Öcalan: "The 21st century will be the century of women's freedom." The YJA Star Commander stated the following:

“This century will be the century of liberation of humanity under the leadership of women. The leader called the PKK a women's party, a women's movement. While the male-dominated mentality had brought humanity to the brink of extinction in the person of women, thanks to the pioneering work of the Leader and our first martyrs, women re-recognized themselves, organized themselves and entered into a great struggle. Today, Leader Apo (Abdullah Öcalan) has enabled the prominence of comrades like Sara, Azime, Gülçiya, Peyman, Delal, Hêjar, Axîn, Azê and Leyla as a result of his 50 years of labor and efforts. The women comrades who have taken over the leadership of the struggle of these pioneering women and their successors are today engaged in a great resistance and struggle in Zap, Avaşîn, Gundê Filla and Bakur.

Leader Apo provided the truest companionship for women. He took women from the brink of extinction and brought them to the light. He brought society back to the light with women's wisdom, and that is why the dominant powers organized the international conspiracy against him. If Leader Apo is in a great struggle on the Imrali Cross today, it is because he is paying the price of women's freedom, the price of the freedom of humanity.

For this reason, it is Leader Apo and the free women's movement that gives the most meaning and significance to this day. The women's liberation movement is a movement that developed under the leadership of Sara and her likes. History also shows that the rulers wanted to attack women themselves and their culture with all kinds of methods. But just as the sovereigns failed in the face of those struggling women, they could not succeed, today, they have failed again in the face of the struggle of Leader Apo and the female companions. They left behind Sara, Leyla, Delal, Hêjar, the pioneers of the Kurdistan Freedom Movement, in order for them to claim the legacy left behind by the struggling women in history."

Calling on all women to join the ranks of the struggle, YJA Star Commander Arjîn Dêrsîm said, "Today, YJA Star guerrillas, who are fighting on the front lines, are waging a great struggle against capitalist modernity and male-dominated state mentality. Today, Leader Apo and our comrades in prisons are manifesting a great will and waging a great struggle against this mentality. Women who recognize themselves with the ideology of Leader APO have a great legacy all over the world today. They are resisting in positions under the leadership of YJA Star, they are in a great struggle and organization against the attacks against women in society. We are also making a call from here. All young women should turn to the struggle, to the ranks of freedom. We call on women to join the struggle against all kinds of attacks against the body and the spirit of women and to join the struggle led by YJA Star guerrillas. This dance is the dance of all women. This song is the song of all women. For this reason, all women must embrace this struggle. We will make the women's revolution absolute with the slogan "Jin, Jiyan, Azadî" (Woman, Life, Freedom). We will break the Imrali isolation. We will create a free life, a free country and free women."

YJA Star guerrillas stated the following in their speeches:

Loran Serhed: "We celebrate March 8 for all the women of the world, our peace mothers who stand on the vigil for justice, our leader and all those in battle positions. We will make not only March 8 but all days a women's day and we will carry out our struggle in that way.”

Bêrîtan Çiya: "We are raising the fire of freedom, the torch of freedom in the mountains of freedom, in the fields of freedom. And we will always raise this torch. For this, the women of the world must fill the ranks and areas of freedom. We say "Jin, Jiyan, Azadi". With this slogan, we will make the physical freedom of Leader Apo absolute this year. And we will increase our march for freedom day by day."

Zekiye Roza: "I would like to address women from here. It is not enough to demand individual freedom in their struggle because the liberation of society liberates us too. Therefore, the women's revolution must be taken as a responsibility, or rather as a duty that falls on us. Because developing the women's revolution is our debt to the women who are killed every day, everywhere."

Didar Amed: "We became aware of ourselves thanks to Leader Apo. After joining the organization, we became aware of our identity as women. We became aware of our freedom within the YJA Star and HPG. Our goal is to liberate all women. This struggle we are waging is not just for one part or one person, it is for all humanity."

The celebration ended with dance, songs, chants and slogans.