In northeastern Syria, two local politicians have been kidnapped and beheaded by unknown persons. The crime pattern points to ISIS sleeper cells. According to relatives, the two women had already been threatened several times in the name of the ISIS.
In the northeastern Syrian city of Al-Dashisha, south of Hesekê, two local politicians were kidnapped and executed by gunmen. The victims are Sada al-Harmoush, co-chairwoman of the civil council of the Til Sheir (Tal al-Shayer) town, and her deputy Hind al-Khedr, who was also responsible for the economy committee. The perpetrators are unclear, but the crime pattern points to sleeper cells of the jihadist terrorist organization ISIS.
According to available information, Sada al-Harmoush and Hind al-Khedr were abducted during a raid on their home on Friday and taken to an unknown location. Neighbors observed at least eight heavily armed men allegedly involved in the abductions. Just hours after the abduction, local residents found the decapitated bodies of Harmoush and Khedr on a roadside not far from the center of al-Dashisha. Relatives reported that both women had recently been threatened in the name of the ISIS.
Targeted operations against ISIS structures
For months, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have been conducting targeted operations against structures of the ISIS militia, which has been reorganizing in the shadow of Turkish attacks against the northeastern Syrian autonomous region. Just earlier this week, an ISIS commander was captured during an operation by the YAT counterterrorism unit near Hesekê. The forty-year-old is responsible for attacks on SDF commanders and other figures. However, the geographical extent of the area and lack of technical resources make the fight against cell structures difficult. The invasion of Turkey, which began in the fall of 2019, has also massively strengthened ISIS. Jihadists who managed to retreat to the desert in the Syrian-Iraqi border region in the course of the “Cizîrê Storm” liberation offensive have been able to reorganize largely unchallenged and carry out attacks in both countries.
In a written statement the European Kurdish Women’s Movement (TJK-E) condemned the silence surrounding the double murder of Sada al-Harmoush and her deputy Hind al-Khedr and said: “We will remove the occupying forces. Dictator Erdogan will lose.”
ISIS has claimed responsibility for the double killing.
The TJK-E statement added: “The Rojava Revolution developed under the leadership of women and reflects the influence of both the organized people groups and the organized power of women to the peoples of the Middle East and the world. For this reason, the Rojava Revolution is defined as a women’s revolution.”
The statement adde: “Women who have been locked up at home for five thousand years have become the leading force of the struggle for freedom and the fearful dream of fascist systems”. No regime, system or dictator can prevent this struggle. Nobody can prevent the resistance of Kurdish women who are inspired and admired by the whole world.”
The statement reminded that the co-chair of Til El Şayir in Rojava, Sada al-Harmoush and her deputy Hind al-Khedr , were killed.
“These killings – said the statement – targeted the Rojava Revolution, and the stable and safe environment provided in Rojava. We reject these attacks against a free and egalitarian life founded on the basis of a democratic nation. These massacres show how much the power fears free women. With this massacre, a new crime has been added to the list of dictator Erdogan’s crimes.”
The statement also added: “We strongly condemn the silence of the international community, international women’s organizations and legal organizations against crimes against women. We call these institutions and organizations to fulfill their responsibilities. We extend our condolences to the families of the martyrs. We promise to increase the struggle against all fascist and genocidal attacks aimed at women’s will and freedom. We reiterate our determination to protect women’s gains and rights and state that we will eradicate this fascist system from its roots.”
Women’s organisations in the UK condemn femicides in North East Syria
The Kurdistan Solidarity Network Jin, WDR UK Committee, Kurdish Women’s Initiative UK, Kurdish People’s Assembly UK, Southall Black Sisters, Women’s Strike Assembly and FiLia issued a statement on the murder of Sada al-Harmoush (co-chair of the City Council) and Hind al-Khedr (person in charge of the economic committee) in Al-Shedad (Heseke).
The statement said: “These murders were brutal, calculated and, tragically, not unique. This is the next in a line of targeted killings of the women who are the vanguard of the women’s revolution. ISIS and groups like them are fundamentally weak. Like a parasite they can’t even survive without the host it attacks, they are waging a war on life itself.”
The statement continued: “The fascist Turkish state is constantly funding and supporting these groups and often gives the order for assassinations such as these. In turn, the British state and others like it support Turkey in its aims and proxy-wars. We hold the international players who claim to be fighting for freedom and democracy accountable for attacks like these.”
The signatories remind that “the Kurdish Women’s Movement is already struggling against the murder of women in its campaign against the Turkish state’s brutality” and called on everyone to sign up to the campaign 100 reasons to prosecute a dictator.