Results of occupation’s violations against civilians in Afrin during two years of occupation

​​​​​​​The Turkish occupation army and its mercenaries have killed more than 535 civilians from Afrin, injured more than 670 civilians, including 300 children, and abducted 3,300 civilians whose fate remains unknown. The violations spread to nature and archaeological sites.

In January 20, 2018, the Turkish occupation army attacked Afrin canton and the civilians using all heavy weapons, and targeting women, children, the elderly and young people in addition to the archaeological and historical sites.

Because of these brutal attacks, Afrin residents were forced to get out of their land and homes, most of whom now live in al-Shahba  canton near Afrin, some of whom went to the rest areas of northern and eastern Syria, and a number of them went to Aleppo.

After the displacement of the people, the families of mercenaries were settled in Afrin

Before the Turkish occupation of Afrin, the population of the canton was 550,000, but after the occupation and because of the displacement of more than 300,000 people from Afrin, only 20 percent of the indigenous population remained in Afrin, while the remaining 80 percent of the population are the families of mercenaries, residents of Hama, Homs, Idlib, Daraa and al-Ghouta countryside, who have been resettled in the area with the aim of making the demographic change.

The Turkish occupation army has committed numerous violations of human rights against civilians, nature, historical and archaeological sites, and due to the absence of human rights and humanitarian organizations in Afrin, all those violations cannot be documented.

Statistics of the dead and injured

During the two years of occupation, 534 civilians were killed in Afrin, 489 of them were killed as a result of the Turkish occupation's shelling on the area and 54 civilians were killed under torture. The killing was also extended to journalists.

In two years, more than 670 civilians were injured as a result of the shelling by the Turkish occupation army, including 300 children.

Kidnapping the civilians

More than 6,000 people have been kidnapped in Afrin, the fate of 3,300 of whom including women are still unaccounted, and more than 700 people were tortured.

The story of 30-year-old Aras is painful and tragic, and it is the greatest example of the violations and brutality of the Turkish state and its affiliates. In the result of the brutal actions practiced against him, he has become deaf, all his reproductive organs have been damaged in addition to cutting three pieces of his left ear.

On November 19, 2019, the BBC's Arabic section published the story of the citizen Aras.

More than 500 people have been kidnapped for ransoms, and the people are kidnapped and blackmailed on charges of working with the  Autonomous Administration, but the main goal of the kidnapping is to demand ransom, which in some cases can amount to US $ 100,000.

 The number of bombings (mines and explosive devices) reached 198.

Cutting and burning trees

The Turkish occupation army and its mercenaries cut more than 150,000 olive trees, more than 300 perennial and rare trees and more than 15,000 oak trees in Afrin canton with the aim of selling them as firewood. 

More than 10,000 olive trees, and more than 2,150 dunams of agricultural lands planted with various crops were burned.

The destruction of schools, homes and places of worship

During the period of the attacks and after the occupation destroyed 64 schools in Afrin and its countryside, either in full or in part, resulted in the denial of study by more than 50,000 students.

Afrin schools, which have been converted into centers for various entities, are as follows:

Amir Ghubari School for Girls has been converted into a military police station, Azhar Afrin School has been converted into an intelligence headquarters and a torture center, and al-Karama School has been converted into a prison and a detention for abductees. 

The Commercial High School has been converted into a place and a torture and detention center, the Afrin University building has been converted into a restaurant.

In all Afrin schools, Turkish curricula are taught, while Kurdish language education has been banned.

10 religious sites were destroyed, including the Center of the Yazidi Union in Afrin, where there were more than 25,000 Yazidis in Afrin before the occupation, only 7,000 of whom remained, and a compulsory Islamic law education center was opened.

The Alawite Center in the center of Mobata district was destroyed, forcing most Alawites to displace from Mobata.

The property and possessions of the Evangelical Church were looted and stolen in the center of Afrin...

Thousands of homes were destroyed completely or partially.

Changing the names of streets, neighborhoods and villages

The name of Newroz Roundabout has been changed to the Olive Branch Roundabout.

The name of the National Roundabout has been changed to Recep Tayyip Erdoğan Roundabout.

The name of Kawa al-Haddad Roundabout has been changed to the Salah al-Din al-Ayyubi Roundabout.

The names of several villages in Bulbul district have also been changed:

The village of Kutana has been changed to Zafer Obasi.

Changing the name of the village of Qastal Mekdad to Seljuq Obasi.

Changing Kurzely's name to Jafer Obasi.

Mercenaries loot and steal civilians’ property

140 of 300 olive presses in Afrin and its countryside have been looted and stolen, while the rest of the presses, their owners have had to share with a mercenary so as not to be robbed.

The contents of 7 soap factories were looted.

During the agricultural season in 2018, mercenaries stole more than 70,000 tons of olive oil, and they were sent to Turkey and then sold in the Spanish markets as a Turkish product. This amount does not include the 2019 season.

On the other hand, the livestock sector in Afrin was looted by the Turkish state and its mercenaries, and only 20 percent of the livestock that existed before the occupation remain in Afrin.

The looting of archaeological and historical sites

 7 archaeological sites in Afrin were destroyed and vandalized, a number of which have been documented:

Nabi Hori Castle (Sirius).

Ain Dara Archaeological Hill.

Barad's Historical Site (Marmaron).

The antiquities and artifacts stolen and transported to Turkey are the Basalt lion at the Ain Dara archaeological site, and a mosaic stolen from Nabi Hori archaeological site by a mercenary called Mohammed Ali, one of the leaders of the mercenary gangs.

Murders and rapes against women

Women were specifically targeted in Afrin by forcing them to wear black dress and veils, and they were prevented from leaving the house after they had become a symbol of liberation and took leadership positions in building a democratic society in Afrin and north and east Syria.  A set of abuses against women in Afrin was documented:

More than 50 women have been killed in Afrin since the occupation.

210 women were injured.

60 women were raped.

In addition to 3 suicides due to oppression and psychological repercussions resulting from violations.

Since the occupation of Afrin by the Turkish occupation army and its mercenaries, all treaties and conventions relating to the combat forms of discrimination against women have been violated.

These statistics and data have been obtained from Human Rights Organization in Afrin and the Kurdish Red Crescent.

Furthermore, a great number of YPG, YPJ, Internal Security Forces (Asayîş) and Self-Defense Forces’ fighters martyred.

The continuation of violations by mercenaries

The mercenary gangs continue committing their violations against the civilians in Afrin, who have been forcibly displaced to the canton of Al-Shahba. 

The civilians’ homes, populated areas and children's educational places are also targeted deliberately with the aim of intimidating them and preventing them from continuing their education. For example, targeting Aqiba village school more than three times in October last year.

This year, more than 102 cases of shelling and targeting with heavy weapons the populated areas in the areas of al-Shahba and rural areas of Sherawa district have been recorded.

The number of civilians martyred during these violations was 41 martyrs and 78 injured, most of them were children, women and people with special needs.

The continued shelling operations also led to the collapse of a number of civilian homes on the heads of their dwellers.

Tel Rifaat massacre

In December 2, 2019, the Turkish occupation army committed a brutal massacre against the people of Afrin who were forcibly displaced to the areas of al-Shahba in Tel Rifaat district, and the victims of the brutal massacre were 12 martyrs, most of them children.

The practices and brutality of the Turkish army and its mercenaries against the civilians are great, as they are waging a dirty and black psychological war against the people of Afrin residing in the areas of al-Shahba under the supervision of the Turkish intelligence (MIT). The aim of this psychological war is to intimidate the people, force them to displace and migrate again, and keep them away from Afrin permanently.



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