UN Goodwill Ambassador Nadia Murad calls on Turkey to stop attacks in Syria’s Afrin
YEREVAN, MARCH 13, ARMENPRESS. UN Goodwill Ambassador, Yazidi human rights advocate Nadia Murad called on Turkey to stop the attacks in Syria’s Afrin that so far have killed over 200 civilians, The Region reports.
“Today, I received information that the area of Afrin inhabited by Kurds, Yazidis and Christians is under siege from all sides. There is only one road through which people can leave the city. 200 civilians have been killed, including 3 Yazidi children. Shrines and religious sites have been destroyed or forcibly converted into mosques. People’s homes are being looted and minorities are being shamed by extremist militias,” she said in a statement.
She said many of these actions are war crimes and should be documented. “This horror is reminiscent of the initial actions of ISIS in Iraq. Medical and healthcare services are urgently needed. This situation foreshadows "ethnic cleansing" and genocide”, Nadia Murad stressed.
She appealed to the UN, EU to demand that all sides respect the rights of civilians and work toward a ceasefire. “Now is the time to heal wounds, avoid further escalations and return to normality for people in Iraq and Syria,” she concluded.
In January 2018, the Turkish military began an operation in the Kurdish-majority Afrin Canton and the Tel Rifaat Area of Shahba Canton in Northern Syria. Turkey code-named the operation as Operation Olive Branch. In the pretext of fighting terror, Turkey is actually targeting the Kurdish population.
English –translator/editor: Aneta Harutyunyan