Northern-Syria based Kurdish multi-party organisation, Movement for a Democratic Society (TEV-DEM), has called on the U.N.to launch an investigation into crimes committed by the Turkish state and its affiliated mercenaries in Syria’s Kurdish enclave of Afrin.
In statement issued on Sunday, TEV-DEM urged the U.N. to form an investigative commission to examine Turkey’s “kidnapping and murder of civilians, including women and children, and demographic engineering” in the region, pro-Kurdish Fırat News Agency reported.
In Jan. 2018, Turkey declared a military offensive into northern Syria’s Afrin, a mainly Kurdish populated canton cut off from the rest of Kurdish-held territory. After a two-month offensive against Kurdish militia, Turkish troops and Turkey-backed Free Syrian Army (T-FSA) took control of the enclave’s main town on March 17, 2018.
The organisation said Kurdish women in Afrin had been subject to “physical torture’’ and kidnappings, where they were “stripped naked in mercenary detention centers.’’
“We demand an investigation commission for crimes committed in the region of Afrin,” it said.
“The region of Afrin is a forgotten area,’’ TEV-DEM added .”The main responsibility for this lies with the UN, which has lost its legitimate role in the region, as well as with Russia and the International Coalition.”
Following an in-depth investigation into life in Afrin under Turkish military occupation, Amnesty International in August 2018, said Turkish forces have been giving Syrian armed groups free rein to commit serious human rights abuses against civilians in Afrin.
Human Rights Watch documented in April 2018 that Syrian armed groups were looting and destroying civilian property in Afrin and surrounding villages, exacerbating the plight of civilians.