Annual Sleeper Cell Report 2020 – SDF and Coalition Diminish Capability of ISIS, Lower Attacks and Deaths Across the Region

RIC_Report_SleeperCells2020_GraphsDownload Politically, the AANES and SDF continue to walk a tight rope between their allies and enemies. From the US-led Coalition, the SDF remains its number one ally in the region for a sustained…

Sheikh Maqsud Council member: “You cannot separate Sheikh Maqsud from Aleppo. We have to cooperate.”

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Sheikh Maqsud is a unique enclave within Aleppo, one of the oldest and most populous cities in Syria. Aleppo is under Syrian Government control, but the majority-Kurdish Sheikh Maqsud and Ashrafiya neighborhoods retain autonomy and ties to…

US Special Envoy for Syria Joel Rayburn: US “ready to use sanctions” to prevent Turkish attack on NES

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Mr. Rayburn has just replaced James Jeffrey as the US Special Envoy for Syria following Mr. Jeffrey's retirement Rojava Information Center put questions to the U.S. State Department’s incoming Special Envoy for Syria, Joel Rayburn, during…

“Our aim is that these women open their minds” – Roj Camp management on transfers from Al-Hol

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Recently, around forty families have been transferred from Al-Hol camp to the much smaller Roj camp (with less than 2000 inhabitants as compared to around 70,000 in Al-Hol). RIC visited Roj Camp and talked to Nura Abdo, head of camp management.…

‘The regime blockade suffocates this region’ – Health worker on coronavirus crisis in Shehba region

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Health workers in the isolated enclave, home to 200,000 Kurdish IDPs, are struggling to deal with the outbreak Q: Is coronavirus spreading in Shehba? Frankly, it is very difficult to know if someone has coronavirus because the symptoms…

“This is the first time, after thousands of years, that our identity has been accepted and valued” – Eisha Sido, Yazidi Women’s Union of Afrin

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The Yazidi Women’s Union of Afrin works for the protection of the Yazidi culture and promotes the integration of Yazidi women in all spheres of society. Eisha Sido, member of the organization, explains how the establishment of the Autonomous…

“What is very important for us is to see there is willingness to help us” – Gulistan Sido from the University of Rojava

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The University of Rojava recently launched an appeal for support to universities and academics around the world. RIC interviewed Gulistan Sido, responsible for external relations at the University of Rojava, to learn more about its history,…

‘We have very long meetings, because we must reach an understanding’ – Zelal Jeger on building democracy in NES

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TEV-DEM co-chair Zelal Jeger has been involved in building the new political system in NES since its outset  Thanks a lot for your time. Firstly, can you introduce yourself and your work? I am Zelal Jeger, the co-chair of TEV-DEM,…

Interview: The relevance of people’s buses in times of economic crisis, municipality of Qamishlo

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Last year, the municipality of Qamishlo has set up public transport for the first time in this city: the Basên Gel (People’s buses). It is the first step towards more sustainable and affordable transport in North-East Syria, a region…

Interview: “These ‘cafes’ manipulate women, and so we shut them down” – Raqqa Women’s Office

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A recent ruling from the Raqqa Civil Council bans women from working in “cafeterias” in the city, as well as banning the public consumption of alcohol. On the one hand, the ruling provides an example of North and East Syria’s devolved…

Interview: “AANES must build a true partnership between Arabs, Syriac-Assyrians and Kurds” – Daoud Daoud, Assyrian Democratic Organization

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Can you introduce yourself and the Assyrian Democratic Organization? My name is Daoud Lahoud Daoud, and I am a civil engineer and general secretary of the Assyrian Democratic Organization. The Assyrian Democratic Organization is an Assyrian…