Senior YPG Commander Berxwedan: We Firmly Believe Kobane Will Triumph Soon

YPG Fighter in Kobane (Photo: DIHA)

A YPG Fighter in Kobane (DIHA)

Mutlu Civiroglu

Mr. Berxwedan, I would firstly like to wish a happy New Year to you and all Kobane. Exciting news are coming through from Kobane for the last several days. What is the result of the recent clashes?

We wish especially to the Christian world and the whole world a happy new year. As you know, we started the operation to liberate Kobane about 15 days ago. Operations at the eastern and southern fronts were carried out as part of this offensive during which YPG and YPJ fighters have achieved a great success.

Most recently, the Mekteba Resh [Black School] where the ISIS thugs were deployed and carried out attacks from, and several other strategic points were liberated by us three days ago. A number of thugs were killed and their ammunition were seized by us. That’s why our fighters are in high morale and do firmly believe they will triumph.

Mahmud Berxwedan

Mahmud Berxwedan

What is the strategic importance of the liberated Black School and the other strategic points on the path to victory?

The area of the Black School and other points we took control over, divides Kobane into two sides. From Mishtenur Hill extends a line to the border and under the hill and above at the 48th Street there is a pool, from where dominance can be gained over the western and eastern sides. The strategic importance of this area is very great. When ISIS thugs were there, they could see each side of the city both with naked eye and with binoculars. We can say that we have been able to liberate this point from the ISIS thugs completely and now it is in our control. That’s why the operation of the night before was of great importance and successful.

The ISIS entered the city from the eastern front and attacked mainly from this side. What kind of an impact would the liberation of the mentioned points have on the eastern front?

ISIS made advances through these mentioned points which are the areas that enable to gain domination over the city. Now that we have captured these areas, ISIS will no longer be able to move as easily as it has done so far, because we have also taken the control of a reinforcement route they used. Therefore, ISIS is in panic now. They are startled and have withdrawn from Kobane many tanks and armored vehicles of theirs.

YPG Fighter in Kobane (DIHA)

YPG Fighters in Kobane (Photo: DIHA)

What is the course of the fighting in Kobane, are you hopeful that a greater progress can be achieved or the Kobane city can be entirely cleansed of the ISIS within a short period?

We know that ISIS will not give up on Kobane that easily. During recent clashes we saw once again that they are firmly resisting to not to leave Kobane. They are using all their possibilities to the fullest extent, carrying out suicide attacks with vehicles or individuals. In order not to leave Kobane, they have brought their most skilled teams here. It is not true to say that the ISIS thugs are withdrawing from Kobane but they all are being killed by the YPG and YPJ fighters who are fighting at every point with courage and commitment to victory and liberating these areas step by step. Journalists can come here and document it; their corpses are to be found in every single house liberated by us now. Therefore, we cannot speak of a simple and quick triumph but we believe that the thugs will no longer be able to resist in the face of the operation we are waging.

Do you attribute their recently increased suicide attacks to this offensive?

ISIS is making every effort to make a progress in Kobane. Everyone knows that the main method of ISIS is the suicide attacks. A few more explosions took place in the Black School and some other houses the in past few days. They are carrying out both suicide attacks and other explosion tactics. In this way, they want to spread fear but this tactics of theirs has not really worked in Kobane since our fighters are on the alert and moving in a professional manner.


YPG Fighters and Local Defenders Photo: DIHA


Many experts on Kurds and Syria thought that Kobane would fall in a two weeks time. What is the secret of this resistance? How could YPG withstand a power like ISIS and is heading on the way to victory as you put it?

If examined well, it will be seen that the secret of the resistance lies hidden in the soul of every single fighter of the YPG not accepting to surrender. Putting up a heroic fight, these fighters wrote epics such as the Serzori Epic, they fought to the last drop of blood despite being encircled from all sides, and fell a martyr saying “Bijî Berxwedana Kobane” [Long live Kobane resistance].


YPG Fighter Arin


Fighters like Martyr Zozan and Martyr Erish were martyred whilst fighting by saying that the ISIS tanks could enter Kobane only by walking over their bodies. This is where lies the secret of this resistance which is the struggle of tens of others like Arin and Kendal.

This secret is the devotion to the land and to an honorable life. ISIS thugs have so far been able to capture in a short time all the areas they headed for, but they haven’t been able to take Kobane where they have been suffering heavy losses for over three months now. They will never be able to take it either. The spirit of resistance born by YPG and YPJ fighters is present nowhere else all around the world. This spirit is also the guarantee of the success to be achieved in 2015.

Is ISIS still bringing in reinforcements from other cities as Raqqa which are under its control, to launch new attacks?

At every opportunity they are bringing in reinforcements from the cities of Manbij, Jarablus, Al-Bab, Raqqa and Tal Abyad under their control. Having suffered a setback here, they now want to turn the situation to their advantage by means of these forces. We are making a progress and have now taken some more significant points under control but they continue to resist. Despite all the reinforcements being deployed by them, we believe we are going to liberate Kobane in not a very long time.


YPG Fighters in a Newly Liberated Building (Photo: DIHA)


Recently a number of air strikes were carried out by the coalition. Is there a new strategy of the coalition forces regarding the roads used by the ISIS to dispatch reinforcements?

There is no major change in question regarding the coalition’s strategy. However, considerable airstrikes were conducted earlier against the roads in Tal Abyad and Jarablus areas. The strikes are mainly targeting the forepart of the battlefield and partially the backside.

What is the impact of the enhanced and effective air attacks on you?

Air attacks have increased in the last few days. This support of coalition forces also causes a psychological destruction for the ISIS.


What do you think about the return of more civilians to Kobane?

Many of our people are waiting at the border and want to return to Kobane as soon as possible. There are also those who have not left Kobane and continue living here despite the war. The inhabitants of Kobane have never lived anywhere else before, they have no such an incident in their history. Many families are turning back to Kobane of their own accord. On the one hand this is good in terms of support but on the other bad, because due to the harsh winter conditions we have some problems, especially with the heating. Besides, a humanitarian corridor into Kobane has yet to be opened. There is also a lack of experienced doctors. But the people who have returned say that they will not leave Kobane even if they have to eat soil out of necessity.

Finally, what is your message to the Kurds and the world for the year 2015?

2014 was the year of the Kurdish resistance as the Kurds showed the whole world that they will never accept defeat. This people, who stick to liberty, has fought against ISIS not only for themselves but also for the peoples of the Middle East and the whole world. We hope the fight which began in 2014 brings freedom to the Kurdish people in 2015. We wish a happy new year to the resisting Kurdish people and all the peoples of the world.


For my participation to a show, interview me or get a quote on Kobane and other Kurdish related issues, please contact me at


Translated into English by Berna Özgencil

YPG Oberbefehlshaber von Kobane Berxwedan: Wir werden Kobane bald befreien


YPG Oberbefehlshaber Mahmud Berxwedan, wir wünschen Ihnen, Ihren Freunden und Kobanê ein frohes neues Jahr. In den letzten Tagen kommen erstaunliche Berichte aus Kobanê, was ist das Ergebnis der letzten Kämpfe?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Wir wünschen vor allem den Christen und der ganzen Welt ein frohes neues Jahr. Bekanntlich haben wir vor ca. 15 Tagen mit den Befreiungsoperationen von Kobanê begonnen. In den östlichen und südlichen Fronten wurden im Rahmen dieser Operation von den YPG und YPJ Kämpfern grosse Erfolge erzielt. Zuletzt haben wir die “Schwarze Schule”, die von den ISIS Terroristen belagert wurde sowie weitere strategische Punkte befreien können. Dabei wurden mehrere Terroristen getötet und Munition beschlagnahmt. Deswegen sind unsere Kämpfer sehr gut gelaunt und glauben fest an einem Triumph.

Wie ist die Rolle der Eroberung der Schwarzen Schule und der strategischen Punkte im Rahmen des Sieges? 

Mahmud Berxwedan: Die Schwarze Schule und die Umgebung teilt Kobanê in zwei Abschnitte. Von Miştenur Hügel geht eine Linie zur Grenze und unter dem Hügel sowie oberhalb auf der 48. Strasse gibt es einen Pool, von da aus kann man die westlichen und östlichen Seiten dominieren. Die strategische Bedeutung dieses Ortes ist sehr gross. Als die ISIS Terroristen hier waren, konnten sie jede Seite der Stadt mit blossem Auge als auch mit Fernglas sehen. Wir können sagen, dass wir diesen Punkt von den Terroristen retten konnten und nun dieser in unserer Kontrolle ist. Deswegen war die gestrige Operation von grosser Bedeutung und war erfolgreich.

ISIS drang von der Ostfront in die Stadt ein und griff hauptsächlich von dieser Seite an. Was hat die Eroberung dieser Punkte für Auswirkungen auf den Ostfront?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Wie schon erwähnt, machte die ISIS seine Fortschritte dank diesen Punkten, da sie von hier aus dieBerxo ganze Stadt kontrollieren konnten. Nun wird die ISIS nicht mehr in der Lage sein, hier zu dominieren, zudem haben wir einen Unterstützungsweg erobern können. Deswegen ist die ISIS zur Zeit in Panik. Vor Schreck haben sie mehrere ihrer Panzer zurückgezogen.

Wie werden die Kämpfe in Kobanê weitergehen, können sie in einem kurzen Zeitraum grössere Fortschritte erzielen und besteht die Hoffnung, dass sie die Stadt von den ISIS Terroristen vollständig befreien können?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Wir wissen, dass die ISIS nicht so schnell Kobanê aufgeben wird. Wir konnten sehen, dass die Terroristen bei den gestrigen Auseinandersetzungen einen grossen Widerstand geleistet haben. Sie nutzen alle Möglichkeiten in vollen Zügen aus, sei es mit ihren Waffen, Panzern oder mit Selbstmordanschlägen. Um Kobanê nicht zu verlieren, haben sie ihre qualifizierten Kämpfer hierher gebracht. Es ist nicht richtig zu sagen, dass die ISIS Terroristen sich von Kobanê zurückziehen, denn jeder Punkt wird von den mutigen YPG und YPJ Kämpfern Stück für Stück erobert und von den Terroristen bereinigt. Journalisten können hierher kommen und es dokumentieren. In jedem Haus, das wir von den Terroristen befreien, kann man ihre Leichen auffinden. Deswegen können wir von einem einfachen Triumph nicht sprechen aber glauben, dass die Terroristen unseren Befreiungsoperationen nicht länger widerstand leisten können.

Haben die erhöhten Selbstmordanschläge der letzten Zeit etwas mit ihrem Gegenangriff zu tun?


Mahmud Berxwedan: ISIS setzt alles daran, um in Kobanê weiterzukommen. Jeder weiss, dass die wichtigste Methode der ISIS die Selbstmordanschläge ist. In der vergangenen Nacht fanden in der “Schwarzen Schule“ und in anderen Häusern ein paar Explosionen statt. Selbstmordattentate und andere Sprengtaktiken werden durchgeführt. Auf diese Weise wollen sie den Gegnern Angst einjagen, jedoch hat dies in Kobanê nicht funktioniert. Da unsere Kämpfer sehr wachsam und auf professionelle Weise handeln.

Viele Syrien- und Kurdenexperten dachten, dass Kobanê spätestens in zwei Wochen fallen wird. Wie konnte die YPG angesichts eine solchen Kraft der ISIS so lange standhalten und geht jetzt zum Sieg?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Da die YPG Kämpfer eine Kapitulation nicht akzeptieren, liegt das Geheimnis des Widerstands in der Seele versteckt. Mit ihren heldenhaften Kämpfen schrieben sie Epen wie die von Serzorî und obwohl sie von allen Seiten belagert waren, kämpften sie bis zum letzten Tropfen Blut und sagten als sie gefallen sind ’’Bijî Berxwedana Kobanê’’. Märtyrer Zozan und Êrîş sagten, dass die Panzer der Terroristen nur über ihre Leiche in Kobanê eindringen können, haben mutig gekämpft, sind auch genau so gefallen. Das ist das Geheimnis dieser Widerstand, der Kampf von Dutzenden wie Arîn und Kendal. Die Bindung zum Land und ein ehrenvolles Leben zeichnet dieses Mysterium. ISIS Terroristen haben zuvor alle Angriffsziele in kürzester Zeit erobern können, jedoch seit vier Monaten versuchen sie Kobanê zu bezwingen und machten dabei grosse Verluste. Sie werden Kobanê auch nie bekommen. Den Widerstandsgeist der YPG und YPJ Kämpfer werden sie nirgendwo auf der Erde antreffen können und diese ist die Garantie für den Erfolg, der im Jahr 2015 erreicht werden soll.

Kommen noch aus den Städten wie Raqqa, die unter ihrer Kontrolle stehen Unterstützungen?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Bei jeder Gelegenheit bringen sie aus den Städten Minbic, Dscharabulus, Al-Bab, Raqqa und Tilebyad Verstärkung. Sie erlitten eine Niederlage und wollen mit diesen Kräften die Situation zu ihren Gunsten wenden Wir machen Fortschritte und haben Punkte unter Kontrolle, aber sie leisten weiterhin Widerstand. Trotz dieser Verstärkungen denken wir, dass wir Kobanê in kürzester Zeit befreien werden.

Gestern war auch eine grosse Anzahl von Luftangriffen. Gibt es eine neue Strategie der Koalitionsstreitkräfte wegen den Strassen, die ISIS zur Verstärkung benutzt?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Eine grosse Veränderung der Strategie ist nicht zu ersehen, diese Strassen werden nicht angegriffen,  aber besonders hatte es einige grosse Luftangriffe Richtung Tilebyad und Dscharabulus. Insgesamt gibt es vor und teilweise auf der Rückseite der Frontseite Luftangriffe.

Was sind die Auswirkungen der effektiven Luftangriffe auf Sie?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Die Anzahl der Luftangriffe sind in den letzten Tagen gestiegen. Die Unterstützungen der Koalitionsstreitkräfte bringt die ISIS zur psychischen Niederlage.



Was denken Sie über die Rückkehr mancher Zivilisten nach Kobanê?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Viele unserer Menschen warten an der Grenze und wollen so schnell wie möglich nach Kobanê zurückkehren. Es gibt auch Leute, die trotz des Krieges Kobanê nicht verliessen. Die Einwohner von Kobanê haben an keinem anderen Ort gelebt, sie kennen dies nicht und wollen deshalb zurückkommen. Einerseits ist dies zur Unterstützung gut aber andererseits schlecht, denn aufgrund der harten Winterbedingungen haben wir Probleme mit dem Heizen. Der Hilfskorridor ist noch nicht geöffnet und auch der Mangel an erfahrenen Ärzten ist ein Thema. Aber die Leute, die bereits nach Kobanê zurückkehrten sagten, auch wenn sie aus Not Erde essen müssten, werden sie Kobanê nicht verlassen.

Abschliessend, was ist Ihre Botschaft für das Jahr 2015 an die Kurden und die Welt?

Mahmud Berxwedan: 2014 war das Jahr des kurdischen Widerstands und die Kurden zeigten der ganzen Welt, dass sie eine Niederlage niemals akzeptieren werden. Dieses Volk, das auf Freiheit fixiert ist, hat nicht nur für sich, sondern für die Völker des Nahen Ostens und für die ganze Welt gegen die ISIS gekämpft. Wir wünschen, dass der Kampf, der im 2014 begonnen hat, dem kurdischen Volk im 2015 die Freiheit bringt. Wir wünschen dem kurdischen Volk und einschliesslich der ganzen Welt ein frohes neues Jahr.

Vom Kurdischen ins Deutsche übersetzt von Ayten Şahan

YPG Komutanı Berxwedan: Yakında Kobanê’yi Özgürleştireceğimize İnanıyoruz

Cultural Center

Mutlu Çiviroğlu

YPG Genel Komutanı Mahmud Berxwedan, başta sizin, bütün arkadaşlarınızın ve Kobanê’nin yeni yılını kutluyorum. Son birkaç gündür Kobanê’den dikkat çekici haberler geliyor, yaşanan son çatışmaların sonucu ne?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Biz de başta Hristiyan aleminin olmak üzere bütün dünyanın yeni yılını kutluyoruz. Bildiğiniz gibi yaklaşık 15 gün önce Kobanê’yi özgürleştirme hamlesini başlatmıştık. Doğu ve güney cephelerinde operasyonlar bu hamle çerçevesinde düzenlendi ve YPG ve YPJ savaşçıları büyük başarılar elde ettiler. En son da IŞİD çetelerinin yerleşip oradan saldırılar düzenlediği Kara Okul ve birkaç stratejik nokta daha önceki gece kontrolümüz altına geçti. Bu sırada birçok çete üyesi öldürüldü ve cephaneleri elimize geçti. Bunun için savaşçılarımızın moralleri çok yüksek ve kesinlikle zafere ulaşacaklarına inanıyorlar.

Kontrolünüz altına geçen Dibistana Reş yani Kara Okul ve diğer stratejik noktaların önemi ne peki?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Kara Okul ve çevresinde kontrolümüz altına geçen noktalarda Kobanê iki kısma ayrılıyor. Miştenur Tepesi’nden sınıra inen bir hat var, yine tepenin alt ve 48. Cadde’nin üst kısmına düşen tarafta bir havuz var, buralardan batı ve özellikle de doğu tarafına hakimiyet kurulabiliyor. Stratejik önemi büyük. IŞİD çeteleri burada oldukları süre zarfında şehrin her tarafını hem çıplak gözle hem de dürbünle görebiliyorlardı. Bu noktayı tamamen IŞİD çetelerinin elinden kurtardık diyebiliriz. Artık şehre bizim güçlerimiz hakim. Bunun için önceki gece düzenlenen operasyon bizim için çok önemliydi ve başarıyla sonuçlandı.

Mahmud Berxwedan

Mahmud Berxwedan

IŞİD doğu cephesinden şehre girdi ve daha çok bu cepheden saldırılar gerçekleştirdi. Alınan bu noktaların doğu cephesi üzerindeki etkisi ne olur?

Mahmud Berxwedan:  Bahsettiğim bu noktalar üzerinden IŞİD ilerlemeler kaydetmişti, çünkü şehre hakimiyetin kurulacağı noktalar bu noktalar. Artık elimizde olan bu noktalarla IŞİD eskisi gibi rahat hareket edemeyecek, yardımların ulaştığı yollardan biri denetimimiz altına geçti. Bundan dolayı IŞİD şu an büyük bir paniğe kapılmış durumda. Korkudan birçok tanklarını, panzerlerini geri çektiler.

Peki, Kobanê’deki çatışmalar nereye doğru gidiyor, kısa bir sürede daha büyük ilerlemelerin kaydedileceğine ya da IŞİD’in Kobanê’den tamamen çıkarılabileceğine dair umudunuz var mı?

Mahmud Berxwedan: IŞİD’in kolay kolay Kobanê’den vazgeçmeyeceğini biliyoruz. Dün yaşanan çatışmalarda da Kobanê’den çıkmamak için çok direndiklerini bir kez daha gördük. Ellerinde olan bütün imkânları sonuna kadar kullanıyorlar, araçlarla, şahıslarla intihar saldırıları gerçekleştiriyorlar. Kobanê’den çıkmamak için en nitelikli ekiplerini buraya getirmişler. IŞİD çetelerinin kaçtıklarını söylemek doğru değil, her noktada IŞİD çeteleri YPG ve YPJ savaşçılarını zafere inanan cesaretiyle tamamen öldürülüyor ve adım adım özgürleştiriliyor orası. Gazeteciler gelip inceleyebilir, alınan her evde mutlaka onların cesetleri çıkıyor. Bunun için kolay bir şekilde zafere ulaşacağımızı söyleyemiyoruz fakat başlattığımız hamle karşısında da IŞİD çetelerinin direnebileceğini düşünmüyoruz.

Son zamanlarda artan intihar saldırılarını bu hamleye mi bağlıyorsunuz?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Evet öyle! Kobanê’de ilerlemek için IŞİD bütün yöntemleri uyguluyor. IŞİD’in asıl yönteminin intihar saldırıları olduğunu herkes biliyor. Önceki gece Kara Okul ve birkaç evde daha patlamalar yaşandı. Yani hem intihar saldırıları, hem diğer patlatma taktikleri uyguluyorlar. Bu şekilde bir korku salmak istiyorlar fakat bu taktik Kobanê’de işlerine pek yaramadı. Çünkü savaşçılarımız pürdikkat, profesyonel bir şekilde hareket ediyor.

Suriye ve Kürtler konusunda uzman birçok kişi Kobanê’nin bir iki hafta içinde düşeceğini düşünüyordu. Bu direnişin ne sırrı ne? IŞİD gibi bir güç karşısında YPG nasıl bu kadar uzun süre direnebildi ve şimdi zafere doğru yürüyor?



Mahmud Berxwedan: İyi bir şekilde araştırılırsa direniş sırrının her YPG savaşçısının teslimiyeti kabul etmeyen ruhunda saklı olduğu anlaşılır. Kahramanca savaşan bu savaşçılar Serzorî Destanı gibi destanlar yazdılar, her taraftan kuşatılmalarına rağmen son damlalarına kadar savaştılar ve ‘’Bijî Berxwedana Kobanê’’ diyerek şehit düştüler. Şehit Zozan ve Şehit Êrîş gibi savaşçılar tankların ancak cesetlerine basıp Kobanê’ye girebileceklerini söylediler ve öyle savaşıp şehit düştüler. İşte bu direnişin sırrı burada, Arîn ve Kendal gibi onlarcasının mücadelesidir bu sır. Toprağa ve onurlu bir yaşama bağlılıktır bu sır. IŞİD çeteleri yöneldikleri her yeri kısa bir sürede alabiliyorlar fakat dört ay kadar bir süredir burada büyük bir kayıp verdiler ve Kobanê’yi alamadılar. Hiçbir zaman da alamayacaklar. YPG ve YPJ savaşçılarındaki bu direniş ruhu dünyanın başka bir yerinde olmayan bir ruh, ki bu ruh 2015 yılında elde edilecek başarının da teminatı olan bir ruh.

Peki, yeni saldırılar için IŞİD’e Rakka gibi kontrolünde olan diğer şehirlerden hala takviye güçler geliyor mu?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Fırsat buldukça Minbic, Cerablus, Bab, Rakka, Tilabyad şehirlerinden takviye güçler getiriyorlar. Bir kırılmaya uğradılar, bu güçlerle durumu lehlerine çevirmek istiyorlar. Biz ilerliyoruz, önemli noktalar kontrolümüz altına geçti fakat onlar direnmeye devam ediyorlar. Tüm bu takviye güçlere rağmen Kobanê’yi çok da uzun olmayan bir süre sonra özgürleştireceğimizi düşünüyoruz.

Dün de çok sayıda hava saldırısı oldu. IŞİD’e takviye güçlerin ulaştığı yollar üzerinde koalisyon güçlerinin yeni bir stratejisi var mı?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Stratejide büyük bir değişiklik söz konusu değil, bu yollar değil de özellikle Tilabyad ve Cerablus taraflarında bazı önemli hava saldırıları olmuştu. Genel olarak savaş cephesinin ön tarafına hava saldırıları düzenliyorlar ve kısmen de cephenin arka tarafına.

Hava saldırılarının fazla ve etkili olmasının sizin üzerinizdeki etkisi ne?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Hava saldırıları son birkaç gündür artmış durumda. Bu bize bir destek ve koalisyonun hava saldırılarıyla IŞİD psikolojik olarak da bir yıkıma uğruyor.

Kobanê’ye dönen siviller var, onların dönüşü hakkında ne düşünüyorsunuz?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Sınırda bekleyen insanlarımız var, Kobanê’ye bir an önce dönmek istiyorlar. Yine, savaşa rağmen Kobanê’yi bırakmak istemeyen ve burada yaşayan insanlar var. Kobanê halkı başka bir yerde alışmış bir halk değil, tarihinde böyle bir şey yok. Birçok aile kendiliğinden Kobanê’ye dönüyor. Bu bir taraftan destek için iyi bir şey fakat bir taraftan da kötü. Çünkü çetin kış şartlarından dolayı bazı sıkıntılar yaşanıyor, başta ısınma problemi mesela. Henüz bir koridor açılmış değil ve doktorlar konusunda da eksiklikler yaşanıyor. Fakat gelen insanlar Kobanê’deki toprağı yemeye muhtaç da kalsalar burayı terk etmeyeceklerini belirtiyorlar.

Son olarak 2015 yılı için Kürtlere ve dünyaya mesajınız ne?

Mahmud Berxwedan: 2014 yılı Kürtlerin direniş yılı oldu ve Kürtler hiçbir zaman yenilmeyi kabul etmediklerini bütün dünyaya gösterdiler. Özgürlüğe odaklanan bu halk, sadece kendiler için, bütün Ortadoğu halkları, bütün dünya için IŞİD’e karşı mücadele etti. 2014 yılındaki oluşturulan mücadelenin 2015 yılında Kürt halkına özgürlük getirmesini umut ediyoruz. Başta direnen Kürt halkının olmak üzere bütün dünya halklarının yeni yılını kutluyoruz.

YPG Chief Commander in Kobane Berxwedan: Kobane is Resisting for Humanity


Mutlu Civiroglu

Thank you very much Mr. Berxwedan for making time to talk us under these extra-ordinary conditions of war. We wish to hear your thoughts, as the General Commander of YPG in Kobane on the ongoing war

Mahmud Berxwedan: Everyone is talking about a three-months old resistance in Kobane, in reality people of Kobane has been resisting aggression since July 19, 2013. We as the YPG organized our forces to protect our people, their values and way of life from aggressors. First we expelled Assad regime forces) with very limited means but full support of the people of Kobane. As first region to expel regime forces Kobane became a source of hope for people of Rojava and for all freedom seeking people of greater Middle East. Unfortunately in no time we become target for ISIS other Jihadist and various forces of Arab chauvinism. These Jihadist and chauvinist thugs, who have benefited from not even the most basics human values, have been attacking ever since. Our forces have been resisting these terrorist gangs in the east, west and south for more than one and a half year.

Mahmud Berxwedan

Top YPG General Mahmud Berxwedan, after so many sleepless nights

What about the current situation?

On September 15th, ISIS thugs have started the fiercest attacks ever. The attacks came from all fronts; they were better organized and better armed comparing to their advance in Shengal [Sinjar], Mosul and other Syrian territories. Many assumed that Kobane could only resist for about a week, but now nearly 100 days passed and we are confident of victory. The most important question is: Why did Kobane manage to resist for such a long time, while Mosul and Shengal fell only days after ISIS attacked?

How did a small place like Kobane resisted to ISIS while much bigger cities like Mosul and Raqqa fell to these terrorists even though they were protected by large and well-armed garrisons?


Mahmud Berxwedan: People of Kobane have always had the spirit of resistance; have been loyal to their lands since they came into existence. They have never surrendered; it has no place in their culture. Every warrior of YPG/YPJ said the terrorists can capture Kobane only by walking on the warriors dead bodies. The martyrs Erish, Zozan, Emin, Kendal and symbol of our resistance Arin Mikran are manifestations of this spirit of resistance. Let be frank, had it been anyone force other than warriors of YPG/YPJ, this battle would have been lost long time again given the imbalance of forces. Old the world, the Europe and the USA should know that we are fighting Jihadi terrorists with AK-47 light infantry weapons and or will power.

Some media claim the danger is over – as if Kobane was liberated from ISIS. Others say that ISIS reinforced their attacks on the eastern front. What about that?

It is not true that the danger is over. Clearly, IS won’t take over Kobane – but that doesn’t prevent them from trying to do so with all they have. We are in an urban warfare and there is a house-to-house fight. ISIS is using every trick on the books and all the means available to it to launch attacks. Kobane is being liberated one house and street at a time with our martyrs’ blood. Until this very day, ISIS thugs have sent 33 VBIEDs into the city. Every day, -there is suicide attacks carried out by ISIS mercenaries.

Common notion was that coalition jets and YPG have destroyed most of the ISIS’ tanks and heavy weaponry. How heavily armed are ISIS right now?


Mahmud Berxwedan: ISIS is still in possessions of heavy weapons and tanks even though many of these have been destroyed by coalition airstrikes and YPG. They hide their weapons and wait for the most opportunities to attack, i.e. when there are no air raids, as it happened today.

ISIS claims they are in control of half the city. What portion of Kobane do you control?

Mahmud Berxwedan: As a person originally from Kobane, I can say that all strategic points in the city are under YPG/YPJ control. These include most of old city, city center, and border crossing. Helinch district that is downhill from Mishtenur Hill, only 40% of the eastern sector is controlled by ISIS,

Why are they particularly attacking on the eastern sector and what is keeping you from expelling them from eastern sector?

Mahmud Berxwedan: ISIS rotates its forces after very attack. They receive reinforcements from Raqqa, Tal Abyad, Manbij, and Sarrin without any hindrance. They are doing all they can to maintain a presence in the city Kobane.  They do not have the intensions to leave the city and end the invasion. It is important that coalition airstrikes support our troops but we are surrounded from all sides and we are fighting only with light weapons. We need weapons to fight but with exception of one-time airdrop no country has provided us with any weapons. What are all these countries that profess to be against ISIS are waiting for? Let it be known that we determined to fight ISIS everywhere and all the time.

YPG is being criticized for not communicating with world public opinion. For example it is being criticized for press releases mostly in Arabic rather than English. What do you have to say about it?

Mahmud Berxwedan: But is there someone that doesn’t know about Kobane right now? The whole world knows where we are and what our situation is. The whole world knows where YPG is fighting. Dozens of times, we have asked the international community to establish a humanitarian, safe corridor. As of now, civilians remaining in the outskirts of the city are not looked after. In 100 days only one single load of weapons has been delivered.

Well US led coalition air force has attacked ISIS positions daily. US also airdropped weapons to you although the guns may have come from Iraqi Kurdish depots.



Mahmud Berxwedan: We are grateful for assistance rendered by the coalition and for all the support from people all over the world. We are honored to have sympathy and support of American people. We want all concerned to know that the weapons we possess are not nearly enough for dislodging ISIS and defeating. If we can get enough fire power we promise to finish off ISIS in Kobane within 2 days.

What does YPG need urgently, in military terms?

Mahmud Berxwedan: We need all kind of heavy weapons such as tanks, Hummers and bullet-proof vehicles and anti-tank missiles. If we had such heavy weapons we could liberate many villages in west and south Kobane in a short period of time.

Also, we desperately need sniper rifles, night vision goggles and thermal cameras. Even 50 night vision goggles will allow us to inflict heavy casualties on ISIS tugs as they mostly move at nights. Otherwise, our morale is high. Our warriors are not afraid of ISIS and ready to confront it at every opportunity.

Turkey has been criticized in regards to Kobane. It is said that they did not allow passage of Hummers and similar vehicles. How do you, as YPG, see Turkey’s attitude?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Turkey could play an important role in our fight against ISIS. We are neighbor with Turkey from Jazira to all the way to Afrin. We do not have any issue with Turkey and wish to have them as neighbor and good friend. We know Turkey has been criticized for her conduct; Turkey should revise her policies. We think she should play a positive role in the war against ISIS.  ISIS will surely target Turkey and cause her harm in the future. We always knew Turkey was turning a blind eye to ISIS and hoping that she would abandon those policies. We certainly hope and believe that Turkey will change her policies.

How are your relations with free Syrian Army (FSA) groupings and peshmerga forces of Kurdish Regional Government?


Mahmud Berxwedan: We have relationships with and fighting alongside with select FSA groupings. Nearly 70 members of Shamsi Shimal, Siwar Raqqa ve Jabhat al Akrad groups died while fighting alongside with us in Kobane.  We wish to collaborate with these groups for a free Syria that encompasses all peoples. All these groups are complaining from lack of armaments. Aside from these, we have been collaborating with peshmerga forces, mostly on indirect-fire positions for more than two months. Our relations are cordial and professional.

Is it true that ISIS is tunneling under Kobane?

Mahmud Berxwedan: We have learned of this a while back. We don’t think such effort will get them any results. We know they are digging to minimize their losses from airstrikes. We have every precaution taken for such a thing.

YPG has become the most important force fighting ISIS on the ground. There are reportedly people from USA, Canada, Germany, Holland, Israel, Austria etc. who have joined YPG?

British YPG

Mahmud Berxwedan: ISIS is attacking and offending all good people of this planet. All progressive, democracy and freedom loving people are welcome to join us in this fight against ISIS. We will be honored to have them. We consider ISIS to be our enemies regardless of time and space. For us this is a matter of being a force for good. We don’t discriminate between people based on their creed or beliefs. We have in our ranks people from America, Europe, different Middle East countries, Iran and even from Argentina are fighting with us in and for Kobane. Our warriors will enthusiastically embrace any new fighters from around the world.

Activists around the world are asking via Twitter that what they could do for YPG?

Mahmud Berxwedan: Kobane is resisting for all humanity, YPG is fighting for all of the world. Everyone should do whatever they can to support us and Kobane. With this occasion, on behalf of YPG, YPJ and all others defending Kobane I wish Christian world a happy Christmas. We see Christmas as our own holiday also and celebrate it in that spirit. Jesus was a symbol of resistance. We wish all the people of the world a happy New Year.

Also, I want to emphasize that the war in Kobane is the war of honor for all Kurdish people. The Kurds from all parts of Kurdistan and beyond helped us in this war. We are grateful to all. Our special thanks goes to people of Suruç who have been with us from day one.

Thanks for @johannajaufer , @haktas12  and whoRtheKurds for translating this interview into English

Urgent Appeal to International Community from Kobane Officials


Horrifying Image of Devastation in Kobane

While the historical resistance of the People Protection Units (YPG) and the Women Protection Units (YPJ) continues against Daash terrorists, making a major victory with their heroic steadfastness, the rubble of destruction and devastation throughout the city increases.

Moreover, the negative effects of the war on Kobane civilians from children, women and elderly people accumulate either inside the city or on the boarder points with Turkey.


Children are living under tough circumstances in Kobane

Therefore, the possibility of living and pursue life almost become impossible and even warn of an impending humanitarian disaster. Especially hard coldness of winter and spreading of residues harmful projectiles further endanger lives of human and other beings.

But, despite the destruction and devastation of Kobane Canton, its resistance takes a global and humanitarian dimensions beyond its borders, reflecting the human values and objectives. The sacrifices of its heroes and defenders become general humanitarian gains that turn their steadfast city to a global defender front for the international community and humanity as whole.

The above mentioned impose on everyone’s duty to support and provide help to them as long as the security and safety of all of us in danger.

The Executive Council in Kobane Canton salutes the heroic resistance of YPG, YPJ, Free Syrian Army (FSA) and Peshmerga forces against Daash in an ordinary meeting today.


Kobane Defense Chief General Ismet Hasan and Peshmerga Commander General Ahmed Gerdi

The Council members appreciate sacrifices of the mentioned common forces and salute their bravery and honest commitment to defend the noble humanitarian values and their strenuously quest to build a democratic, fair and equal society, which shares peace and tranquility regionally and globally.


Kobane Children Are Under Threat of Continues ISIS Shelling

The Council members, at the same time, saddened with the  global indifference towards Kobane, expressing their deep regret for the failure of the humanitarian organizations and democratic countries to the worsening humanitarian situation where Kobane civilians exposed from all sides to instantaneous indiscriminate shells and continuing attacks of Daash, killing and injuring many of them.

In addition to, great challenges left by the suffocating siege on the province, making providing life means and its essential things impossible. With the gradual disappear from the stocks of food, medicine and baby milk of warehouses or destroy completely by bomb shelling.


Dr. Welat Omer and Medical Team Delivering Aid to Displaced Kobane Residents

So, there is possibility of a humanitarian catastrophe against civilians if the international community does not take the initiative to meet the calls of our citizens and defenders to open a safe humanitarian corridor to cleanse the effects of missiles, bombings and the rubble of destruction.

We appeal international community to make very effort to save the lives of children and other civilians by offering them through support and aid of medical, food and preventive fundamentals.

Kobane 19/12/2014

The Executive Board of Kobane Canton, Syria

PM of Kobane: A Humanitarian Corridor for Thousands of Civilians Urgently Needed


Mr. Anwar Moslem, clashes in Kobane continue for over three months now. What is the latest situation in Kobane now, especially with regard to military developments?

ISIS has been attacking Kobane with heavy weapons for more than three months. YPG and YPJ forces have mounted a great resistance to these attacks. Recently, YPG and YPJ have advanced several streets further on the eastern front, and also made further advances on the southern front. However, the main problem on these fronts is the presence of a street fighting. The ISIS is already outside the city on the western front. Airstrikes of the coalition led by the U.S. are targeting the positions and munitions of the ISIS. We can say that defeating ISIS in Kobane will be a huge gain for the entire humanity. We want everyone to see this point very clearly.

Kobane will attain victory soon, and we truly believe this. However, there still remain some dangers, as there are thousands of civilians in Kobane, including children, who are facing great difficulties due to harsh winter conditions. We are once again calling on the international community to enable the opening of a humanitarian corridor into Kobane. This Tuesday’s mortar attacks by the ISIS have left three civilians martyred and dozens of others injured.


What do the civilians stranded in Kobane and on the border primarily need in the face of harsh winter conditions?

Three quarters of the Kobane city have turned into ruin as result of the attacks by the ISIS. The civilians in Kobane and on the border are mainly in need of clothing, food and beverage. They are also facing a great shortage of medicine. In addition, camps are needed to be built in order to provide shelter and a warm place for these people. This is also needed for thousands of people who will remain outside when they turn back once the resistance in Kobane ends up in victory.


Human rights defenders and international aid organizations need to extend a hand to these people whose houses have all been demolished. Since the day clashes broke out in Kobane, it has been only the municipalities, civilian aid organizations and the people of North Kurdistan [of Turkey] to look after the people of Kobane. Regardless of all the calls we have issued so far, I regret to tell that international organizations are yet to provide any help. The situation of the Kobane people in the city, on the border and in tent cities in Suruc is really heartbreaking.

Turkish government says it has provided great help to the Kobane people and opened its doors to them. You are, however, saying that it has been only the ‘municipalities in the north [of Kurdistan/Turkey’ to provide help?


The statements by Turkey do really sadden us. We weren’t expecting Turkey to act like this. ISIS has recently attacked Kobane from the Mursitpinar Border Crossing on the Turkish side, but Turkey denied this. In relation with that attack, we asked politicians and civilians, from either inside or outside Turkey, to establish a commission of investigation, but Turkey remained silent.

Our people in refugee camps in Suruc are in a dire situation and children aren’t even allowed to receive education in their mother tongue. Turkey is always repeating the same thing, saying that ‘we have opened our doors’. After all, it is a humanitarian duty to open doors to these people who fled the massacres committed by the ISIS in Mosul, Tikrit and everywhere else. Apart from “opening its doors”, Turkey has provided no noticeable help, this is the truth. All human rights defenders, independent organizations and media workers can examine the situation in camps in Suruc in order to see and witness this truth themselves.

What would you like to say about the ISIS attack which left two civilians dead in Australia?

Terrorist actions do really hurt all humanity. Several years ago, thousands of innocent civilians were killed in September 11 terror attacks America. This was followed by similar incidents in France, Spain, Canada and most recently in Australia. The terror in Kobane is the same of the terror in these countries. We offer our condolences to the families of these people and the Australian government. The entire world needs to act together against this terror which is targeting the peoples and religions.

Ms. Hillary Clinton said in a most recent statement that the U.S. should provide assistance to the Kurdish female fighters of the YPJ, and spoke highly of them. What would you say in this regard?


From Kobane, we are sending our greetings to all the American people who have supported us. The statement of Ms. Hillary Clinton has honored us. We are once again extending our thanks to all the American authorities that have lent a helping hand to us. They also have a share in this resistance. The resistance of the YPJ in Kobane is the resistance of all the world’s women. Ms. Hillary Clinton does also have a share in this resistance for she has supported it. We hope that the whole world will in the same way support the YPG, the YPJ and Kobane. The victory in Kobane will be the victory of all the peoples standing against terror.

Kobane now is a place known by the whole world and people from across the world who want to provide help inquire about how to reach you. Is there a certain mechanism in place for people to assist you?

All three sides of Kobane have been surrounded by the ISIS and Turkey is on the other side. Turkey is just permitting the crossing of some wounded people and aid. We are facing some problems in this regard as we cannot move freely. A bank account belong to our administration will be opened soon to enable the people intending to help to reach us. It is not only the Kurdish people but everyone who believes in democracy, peace and humanity that should provide support to the civilians in Kobane.

The Christmas Day and the New Year is approaching. What is your message for the people whose hearts are with Kobane?

I celebrate the Christmas Day of the whole world. There were people who wanted to celebrate it here too but there is a war still going on, the ISIS has not allowed this. I hope 2015 will be a year of peace and fraternity. I wish a Happy New Year where there is no cruelty and all peoples and religions can live together and in peace. All those hearing our voice should support the resistance in Kobane in the New Year also, and provide any help they can for a new Kobane to be built in the wake of victory.


* Translated into English by Berna Özgencil

Kurdish Politician Isa: Kobane Is Fighting ISIS For the Whole World

Gêlo Îsa, 3rd from left

Gêlo Îsa, 3rd from left

Gelo Isa is a well-known politician and a senior official of the Kurdish Democratic Party (PDKS) in Kobane. He has been inside Kobane since the first day of the conflict and wounded seriously in the fight against ISIS. We wanted to get his perspective about the situation in Kobane.

Mutlu Civiroglu

Mr. Isa it has been left over a period of two months behind resistance against the ISIS in Kobane.  In the latest news the Kurds have been taken advantageous position. What can you tell us about the life in Kobane?

I can easily say that the advantage in conflict zone that the power into the hands of Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG).  They are able to do any action in all fronts.  YPG can easily repel any attacks, In case of any exceeding by the ISIS.  Kobane resistance has left two months behind it, as we observe ISIS has suffered a great loss of morale, they have disputes among themselves. On one hand YPG is attacking them. On the other hand peshmergas are attacking them with heavy artillery canons and weapons.  They are trying to get out of this the circle of fire that they got into. Recently in the eastern, western and southern front YPG took back many neighborhoods that were previously occupied by the ISIS.

You said that ISIS had fell into a circle of the fire.  You mentioned that the strong ISIS has strong morale loss. What happened, what has changed that the advantageous had passed into hands of YPG?

When ISIS was starting to attack it had a large number of militants and had heavy weapons.  During the remaining time that they had no more heavy weapons, thousands of its militants have been killed in Kobane. In this way they experience depression. When the fighter loses the morale in the battlefield, they cannot fight anyway. ISIS Emirates orders when they go anywhere, it had become accustomed to take that place or seize the place within a few hours under their control. They encounter the resistance from YPJ and YPG, previously beheading the children, burning houses with heavy weapons, were releasing fear and moving ahead. But they could not achieve in Kobane that what. That means the resistance in Kobane broke the morale of ISIS.

Today we have FSA groups among; dozens of them were martyred while fighting alongside YPG in Kobane. Again, when peshmerga forces became a part of resistance and the airstrike of the US led coalition has defied all their plans. Kurdish problem passed through Kobane and Rojava, the Syrian Kurdistan, and it has since become an international problem. All these elements have become a great morale for YPG in Kobane, and it put the ISIS to fall into a circle of fire.

Although it has lost so why ISIS still does not retreat? On what aims their insistence in Kobane, what do you think?

Villages outside Kobane, or Sirin, Jarablus, Manbij, Tal Abyad, in case of defeat, the emirs and the militants, their command orders and prınces title will be loosing. According to their war of this case, i.e. when an emir [prince] is defeated, that means he will lose “blessed virgins, concubines etc.”, and other privileges would not remain.  This is the main reason they are continue to fight despite they inflict very heavy loses.

A second thing that if the victory to be achieved against ISIS in Kobane is a victory for all Syrian land to be acquired. If ISIS defeated totally in Kobane, they will lose half of its power.  It’s very well known by everyone that ISIS has seized many territories in a short period of time without any serious losses. However, the resistance shown in Kobane by YPG would be an example for every city in Syria and Iraq after this time that ISIS is defeatable. That is the reason that ISIS fights until its last militant, and do not give up in Kobane.  But Kobane has entered in a new era. YPG fighters have slowly surrounded Kobane, both inside and outside the city, and cut he supply routes for ISIS. Reinforcements coming from neighboring ISIS cities will also be targeted by YPG and more of their fighters will be killed. In this way we are hoping to finish ISIS in Kobane and clean the city from them.

What percentage of the city estimated is currently under the ISIS hand?

A portion of about 20-25% of the currently under the control of ISIS, this part is in the section of the South east of Kobane.  If we will capture the Mishtenur Hill completely, less than 10% of the area will remain under the control of ISIS, Mishtenur Hill has a strategic importance; it oversees the entire Kobane. When we will be able to get the other side of Kobane, we will be able to drive ISIS away from Kobane.

We as the people of Kobane thank to freedom and peace defenders all over the world, to the United States of America and other countries in the coalition. We also thank to the 42 countries and their people the rallies held and people walk for Kobane and YPG.

Every country of human rights defenders, every civil society organizations, every human rights organization should support us because Kobane is fighting for the whole world. The success to be obtained in Kobane against the terror would be the success of the all countries that are fighting against the terrorism as terrorism does not recognize the boundaries.

Gazeteci Zara Misto: YPG IŞİD ile Mücadelede Tüm Dünyayı Temsil Ediyor


Kobanê’nin tanınmış gazetecilerinden, ENKS’ye yakınlığı ile bilinen haber sitesinin editörü Zara Misto ile şehirdeki durumu görüştük.

Mutlu Çiviroğlu


Sayın Zara Misto, sizin açınızdan Kobanê genel olarak nasıl görünüyor?

Çatışmalar iki ayı aşkın süredir devam ediyor. Kürt güçleri ciddi ilerleme kaydediyor ve IŞİD’e Rakka’dan Mınbıc’den sürekli destek gelmesine rağmen IŞİD büyük bir moral kaybına uğramış durumda. Kobanê’nin %25-30lik bir kısmı halen IŞİD’in elinde. Doğu tarafında belli hâkimiyetleri var ama Kürt güçlerinin stratejik saldırıları IŞİD’e büyük kayıplar verdiriyor, yüzlerce kişi öldürüldü onlardan, binlerce yaralıları var. Tabi Kürtlerin de 200’den fazla şehidi ve birçok yaralısı var ki bu büyük bir direnişin sembolü.

YPG’nin yürüttüğü son taktik yeni bir yer almaktan ziyade onların saldırılarını bekleyip onlardan çok kişi öldürmek üzerineydi. Bu taktik başarılı bir şekilde işledi, onlar saldırdıkça çok sayıda kayıp verdiler. İşte gözle görülür bir şekilde geri çekilmemelerinin sebebi şehirde bir sokak savaşının olması. Halep örneğinden de anlaşılacağı gibi bütün Suriye şehirlerinde aynı şey yaşanıyor. IŞİD üç taraftan kuşattığı, toplar ve tanklarla saldırdığı şehri kısa bir sürede kontrolü altına almayı planlıyordu, şehri henüz kontrolü altına alamaması da YPG’nin büyük başarısı gerçekten. Hem belirttiğim gibi Kürt güçleri birkaç yeni noktayı ele geçirdi. IŞİD intihar saldırıları ve diğer vahşi saldırılarla ilerlemek istedi ama başaramadı.

zara mistoo

Kamuoyu başarıyı yeni bir yerin kontrol altına alınmasına bağlıyor. Fakat siz asıl meselenin IŞİD’e kayıp verdirmek olduğunu söylüyorsunuz. Yani YPG vur-kaç taktiği uyguluyor, doğru anlaşıldı mı acaba?

Evet, vur-kaç taktiği uygulanıyor. Dün bu taktikle onlara ağır darbe indirildikten sonra yeni yerler kontrol altına alındı. Burada başka bir şey de eklemek istiyorum: IŞİD’in çekildiği bazı yerlerde bombaların patlama tehlikesi var, pusu olabiliyor. Bunun için biraz zaman gerek, yani savaş sokağı gereği bu böyle. Fakat Kürt güçlerinin büyük bir başarı elde ettiğini söyleyebiliriz. Hem peşmergenin hem de Amerikan hava saldırılarının büyük bir etkisi oldu bunda. Dünyayı hedef alan terör örgütü gün be gün Kobanê’de kırılmaya uğruyor. Eğer dünya ülkelerinin yardımı ve hava saldırıları böyle devam ederse IŞİD tamamen çekilir, hem Kürdistan’ın batısında, hem de güneyinde yenilgiye uğratılır.

Bir takım medyada peşmergenin beklenen etkiyi göstermediği seklinde yorumlar oldu. Siz peşmergenin YPG’ye desteğini nasıl değerlendiriyorsunuz?

Peşmergenin kullandığı ağır silahlar önemli bir rol oynuyor saldırılarda. IŞİD mevzilerini hedef alan peşmerge saldırıları ve ABD uçaklarının hava saldırıları da IŞİD’in ilerleyememesinde etkili çünkü YPG’nin silahları IŞİD’in karşısında hafif kalıyor.

Orada daha önceden mevcut olan ÖSO grupları vardı ve sonradan da Akidi’nin grubu geldi. Bu konuda neler söylemek istersiniz?

Fırat Volkanı adı altında savaşan gruplar, Tuwar al-Raqqa, Shams al-Shamal ve Jabhat al-Akrad yani Kürt Cephesi. Kobanê’ye saldırılar başladığından beri onlarca şehitleri ve onlarca yaralıları var. Yeni gelen ÖSO grubu YPG ile bir anlaşma sonucu geldi. Fakat herhangi bir etkisi yok. Yaklaşık 50 kişilik bir gruptu bu ve onlardan yaklaşık 15 kişi geri döndü. Kendi aralarındaki anlaşmazlıktan dolayı geri döndüler, YPG ile herhangi bir sorundan kaynaklı değil. Hala da savaşa girmiş değiller.

Eğer savaşa girmemişlerse neden hala oradalar?

Kobanê’ye geçip yardım etmek istediklerini belirtmişlerdi. Biz de bekliyoruz!

Biraz da YPG’nin rolünü değerlendirmenizi isteyeceğim sizden. YPG’nin rolü ve koalisyon ile birlikte yürüttüğü mücadeleyi nasıl değerlendiriyorsunuz?

Dünyayı tehdit eden bu tehlike için herkesten önce YPG dünyayı uyardı. YPG bundan bir yıl önce bir çağrıda bulundu ve Rojava’da Kürt olsun, Hıristiyan olsun, Arap olsun bütün bölgeleri korudu. IŞİD’in Suriye devrimine ve Ortadoğu’nun hepsine düşman olduğuna dikkat çekti. YPG, terör örgütü IŞİD ile savaşırken yüzlerce şehit verdi. YPG bugün IŞİD ile savaşta tüm dünyayı temsil ediyor çünkü IŞİD tehlikesi bütün dünyayı hedef alıyor.

YPG bugün uluslararası savaş kurallarına göre hareket ediyor. Mesela geçenlerde esir aldığı yaralı bir IŞİD emirini hastaneye götürdü ve tedavi etti. Elindeki esirleri öldürmüyor, yani bir uluslararası devlet ordusu gibi hareket ediyor. YPG kendi halkını teröre karşı savunuyor, kimseye saldırmış değil. YPG’de Kürtler, Süryaniler, Araplar ve Türkmenler var, son zamanlarda Avrupa’dan katılanlar oldu. Sadece şimdi değil, bir yıldan beridir büyük başarılar elde ediyor YPG.

1 Kasım’da bütün dünya Kobanê için ayağa kalktı. Kobanê’de yaşayan bir sivil olarak, yalnız olmadığınızı bilmek nasıl bir his yarattı sizde?

Bu YPG ve Kobanê’deki sivil halk için çok önemli bir şeydi. Kobanê bütün dünya için önemli bir vazife üstlenmiş durumda çünkü. IŞİD bütün dünyayı hedef alan bir örgüt ve YPG bütün dünya için, kendi halkı için mücadele ediyor. YPG, peşmerge, Fırat Volkanı ve hava saldırılarının ortak mücadelesi ile de IŞİD’in bölgemizden tamamen çıkarılacağına inanıyoruz.

Prominent Journalist Zara Misto Analyses the Situation in Kobane

zara mistoo

Zara Misto is prominent journalist and Chief Editor of who has been in Kobane since ISIS attacks against the city. We have discussed the situation in Kobane and balance of war between YPG and ISIS.

Mr. Misto, what is the latest situation in Kobane? What is taking place in war front, what is the situation of the air strikes?

As you know the clashes have been going on for over two months with no respite. In the past week, there were very intense fights took place, and many ISIS militants were killed in these clashes. Of course Kurdish forces also had martyrs.  After the clashes on the eastern front, in Sukul Hal and industrial region and regions near Asayish, the Kurdish forces made progress and got a few new points under its control. These gains were partially made possible by peshmergas’ attacks with cannons on positions under ISIS’s control.

Last week an ISIS tank was destroyed in an operation carried by the YPG forces in south of Kobane. American warplanes have been striking ISIS’s positions in eastern and western fronts when needed. We can say that ISIS has not been able to move forward. To the contrary, the Kurdish forces are moving forward, despite continuous support that is flowing to the ISIS from Manbij and Raqqa. However, the fact that YPG forces now control some important ISIS supply routes provides a significant advantage for the Kurds.  I can tell you that ISIS is suffering a great loss of morale, while Kurdish forces are making important gains.

You say the morale of the YPG, Peshmerga and the FSA are high, and ISIS is suffering a great loss of morale. But somehow a desired progress is lacking, isn’t it?

25-30 % of Kobane is in the hands of the ISIS. They exercise control over, Kaniya Ereban and Miqtela regions in the east, and over the 48th Street in south. The strategic attacks of the Kurdish forces cost ISIS great losses, hundreds of them got killed, they have thousands of wounded. Of course Kurds also have some 200 losses and wounded. This symbolizes a great resistance. The latest tactic of the YPG was based on –rather than gaining new grounds- to wait for their attack and kill as many of them as possible. This tactic has worked successfully. The more ISIS attacked, the more they suffered casualties. As you can see, the reason why there has not been a noticeable pull-back [by ISIS] is that there is a street by street fight in the city. As in the case of Aleppo, in all Syrian cities the same thing is taking place.

ISIS was planning to quickly take control of the Kobane city which it besieged from three sides and attacked with cannons and tanks. The fact that it has failed to establish control over the city yet, is truly a great success of the YPG. As I have stated, Kurdish forces have wrested a few new points from ISIS. I want to add that ISIS wanted to advance by means of suicide bombing and other savage methods, but that failed too due to YPG’s taking effective precautions against such attacks.

Public opinion ties gain to taking control of a new place. However you say that the real deal is to inflict losses on ISIS. That is the YPG implements hit- and-run tactics, did I understand it correctly?

Yes, exactly! Hit and run tactics are being implemented by YPG. With these tactics, we inflicted heavy casualties on ISIS and took control of new places from them.

Yet, I want to add a point here: some places that ISIS withdraws from carry the danger of being booby-trapped or ambushed. To clear things, require time, this is the rule of street fight.

yoj training

Nevertheless, we can say that Kurdish forces have been greatly successful. Both the peshmerga and the US airstrikes had a great impact on this. The terrorist organization ISIS that targeted the world is breaking down in Kobane day by day. If the aid and airstrikes of world countries continue in this manner, ISIS will pull back completely; it will suffer a great defeat in both Western and Southern of Kurdistan [Syrian and Iraqi Kurdistan].

Some in the international media write that peshmerga forces failed to display a positive or expected impact. How do you evaluate the support that peshmerga forces provide to the YPG?

The heavy weapons that peshmergas use play an important role in our attacks. ISIS cannot advance due to these strikes that target ISIS positions. Take away the US airstrikes and the recent peshmerga involvement; it would have been much harder to defend Kobane as YPG had very light weapons against the ISIS.

There were some Free Syrian Army (FSA) groups under the name of ‘Euphrates’ Volcano’ before and another FSA group under Abdul Jabbar Akidi came in later on. The arrival of latter created a huge ruckus. What would you say in this regard?

Groups that are fighting under the name of ‘Euphrates’ Volcano’ are Tuwar al-Raqqa, Shams al-Shamal and Jabhat al-Akrad. Ever since the attacks on Kobane started, these groups suffered tens of martyrs and wounded. The newly arrived FSA group of Akidi came in as a result of some external powers. YPG agreed on their arrival but they have no impact at all. They were about 50 people and approximately 15 of them went back. They went back due to disagreements among themselves, not due to any reason relating to the YPG. Those who remained have not joined in battle yet.

If they have not joined the battle, why are they there?

They said they wanted to enter Kobane and help. We are still waiting to see!

I wanted you to evaluate the role of the YPG a bit. While two months have passed since the siege of Kobane, how would you evaluate YPG’s role and the struggle it pursues with coalition forces in this war against the ISIS?


The YPG was first to draw world’s attention to this ISIS danger that now threatens everybody. A year ago, the YPG made this call and in Rojava and other regions has protected the Kurdish, Christian and Arab population. We drew the attention to the fact that ISIS was the enemy of the revolution in Syria and a threat to the entire Middle East. The YPG suffered hundreds of losses in its fight against the ISIS. We can say that today the YPG represents the whole world, because the ISIS threatens the entire world. While couple of months ago only experts knew its name, today it is known world-wide and YPG is becoming a brand name for the Kurds.

The YPG pursues the war within the rules of the international law. For example, it captured a wounded emir (prince) of ISIS and took him to the hospital for treatment. We do not kill the war captives. That is we behave like the army of an international state. The YPG is defending its people, it did not attack anyone. Kurds, Syriacs, Arabs and Turkomans make up the ranks of the YPG, and lately, fighters have joined us from America and Europe. Not only now, but for a year now the YPG is gaining success.

On November 1st, there were demonstrations for Kobane world over. How did this affect you as a civilian, knowing that you were not alone and Kobane was not forgotten?

This was a very important development for the YPG and civilians in Kobane. That is because Kobane has shouldered an important duty for the entire world. ISIS is targeting the entire world and the YPG as an organization is struggling for her people and for the entire world because ISIS is a threat for entire globe. With the collaboration of the YPG, the peshmerga and Euphrates’ Volcano and the American airstrikes, we believe that we will rout the ISIS from the entirety of our region.


For my participation to a show, interview me or get a quote on Kobane and other Kurdish related issues, please contact me at


Thanks for Burhan Elturan for translating this interview into English

Interview with YPJ Commander in Kobane and Mishtenur Hill

YPG Tree

We discussed the recent situation in Kobane and the situation of Mishtenur Hill with the Senior Commander of Kurdish Women’s Protection Units (YPJ) Meryem Kobani.

Mutlu Civiroglu


Ms. Kobani, it has been stated that YPG and YPJ had some gains today. What is the latest situation on the war front?

We can generally say that our forces hit ISIS hard in many locations. They received major blows on various routes from places such as Raqqa, Tal Abyad and Jarablus where they receive reinforcements from. They were hit badly on the skirts of Mishtenur Hill thanks to guerilla tactics by small groups. Two or three times, they attempted to launch attack inside the city, but we stopped it and they couldn’t move forward. Moreover, many ISIS militants were killed by the air strikes. They can no longer move around as they wish like they used to. They will face the guerilla tactics of YPG and YPJ not only in Kobane but every route they try to attack.

Could you elaborate on what you mean by the guerilla tactics for our readers? Do you mean hit and run?

You should hit the enemy forces whenever you get the opportunity. And they won’t be able to determine where the attack is coming from. You should be everywhere; spread like fungi but should be also hiding. The enemy forces shouldn’t be able catch up with you even when they reach the origin of the attack. We can call that guerilla tactic.

What recent change or incident allowed your forces to advance in this manner?

ISIS has transferred all its forces to our region and we have gained experience in time. This is a rule of war. The longer you fight the enemy, the more battle experience you gain and the more efficient your struggle becomes. Coalition airstrikes and support from peshmergas are also important

You said that you can block the support for ISIS no matter which direction it comes from. Is it true that ISIS receives continuous support from Raqqa, Jarablus and Tal Abyad?

Of course! Yesterday and last night, reinforcements arrived. They continuously get help and heavy weaponry from everywhere. But, from now on we will hit every point that the help reaches and turn it into their graves.

From what I understand, you don’t have the complete control of the Mishtenur Hill, but you have effective forces on the routes up to hill as well as towards Kobane. Is that correct?

Yes, but from now on we will be everywhere.

It has been two months since the beginning of the battle. How do you foresee the future situation in Kobane. There is a hope, a belief both among the Kurds and other peoples of the world that you will liberate Kobane from ISIS. What do you think about this?

The attacks started 60 days ago at 9 pm on the eastern front. I have been active in the war since the beginning. The international powers backed us up. I want to mention this. We are Kurds but we really are not fighting only for the Kurds in Kobane. We are fighting for the humanity against this terrorist organization targeting humanity.

In the previous interview we had, you mentioned that you thought of all the women of the world when you have your finger on the trigger of your gun.

Yes, certainly. When I have my finger on the trigger of my gun I think about Kurdish women, all the women in the world and those who think of freedom and peace in mind.

On November, the 1st, the whole world was on the streets to support you. What would you like to tell to the global public and especially the women of the world about the struggle in Kobane?

The war in Kobane is an international war. The liberation of Kobane would open the door for the liberation of the Middle East. Just at the beginning of the war, I said that the Kobane would be the Stalingrad of the Middle East and bring the peoples together. Many people asked why I said such thing. I stated that we wouldn’t be alone; that millions would see the injustice and support us. Because we are in our own country, in our own lands.

Those who defend human rights in the world cannot turn a blind eye to this truth in the 21st century. I thought every person, every country and every force with a conscious would take a stance against this injustice. Many people ask how I foresaw this. In the beginning, we were on our own; we fought alone against tanks and cannons with our will. But I had hoped. I believe that those in the right will get what they deserve.

The hope you mentioned seems to have become everyone’s hope now. American journalist Richard Engel from NBC was in Kobane couple of days ago. He praises YPG and especially YPJ. He states that your fighters have become a symbol for the whole world in the fight against ISIS.

I believe that this hope will become many people’s, millions of women’s hope. The fight that we fight against this barbaric organization targeting humanity in the name of Islam will become the source of a modern future for those who support the real Islam.

How are ISIS fighters doing? You can see them at the front and listen to their conversations on the radio. How is their morale?

The rule of war dictates that you should act as if your enemy is very strong even if it is weakened. We know that our enemies are experiencing difficulties.

Is it possible that the forward move will continue in the upcoming days? The general public is very optimistic about this.

I don’t want to give away too much at the moment. I have a target in my mind; I can explain everything once I reach there. When I left that place I swore that I would come back.

From your voice, I can tell that you are not far from that place?

I am hopeful. Right at this moment, I am at an emplacement and looking at that place.


For my participation to a show, interview me or get a quote on Kobane and other Kurdish related issues, please contact me at


Thanks for Çağla Orpen for translating this interview into English