Several groups, renowned academics and others from around the world will join a global day of solidarity on Nov. 1 with the Syrian-Turkish border city of Kobane, a statement on the website Peace in Kurdistan said Wednesday. The action comes a year after the city faced a devastating attack from the extremist Islamic State group.
Last year on the same date, hundreds of rallies, demonstrations and actions took place across dozens of countries to show support for Kobane and its people at a time when major players in the region, including Turkey and Iraq, were doing little to help its people cope with the Islamic State group siege.
The statement released Wednesday notes that “months after the worst of the siege, humanitarian aid is still being blocked from entering the city and people are in urgent need of basic medical supplies, food, and clothing.”
Last year's action for Kobane had the support of renowned academics such as Noam Chomsky and U.S.-Palestinian activist and academic Reem Kelani.
The main group behind the action, Kobane Reconstruction Board, said in the statement that “this appeal calls for a humanitarian corridor to be opened up and for the freedom and reconstruction of the city.”
The population of Rojava, the liberated Kurdish region of Northern Syria, led by the Kurdish armed group YPG, has successfully managed to hold ground against successive Islamic State group offensives, including several attacks on Kobane.
The Kurds have also managed to advance against the extremist group and now control Tal Abyad, a town some 30 miles from the Islamic State group’s self-proclaimed capital.
In recent weeks, the YPG has joined a new mutliethnic coalition of Kurds, Arabs and Assyrians with the goal of fighting the Islamic State group and aspiring for a free and secular Syria. “Now is the time to aid Kobane and by so doing show solidarity with the forces who are struggling for a free, democratic and peaceful Syria, “ said a statement announcing the group’s formation.
The call for the action on Nov. 1 coincides with snap parliamentary elections taking place across Turkey amid renewed violence between Ankara and the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK, as well as a crackdown on critical media and the pro-Kurdish political party HDP.