Administration of North and East Syria declares state of emergency as Turkish invasion looms
NORTH AND EAST SYRIA — As convoys of Turkish soldiers and their Syrian National Army (SNA) proxies flood across the Syrian border north of Tel Rifaat, the General Council of the Democratic Autonomous Administration (DAA) of North and East Syria declared a state of public emergency. The DAA called on all public capabilities to be mobilized to protect the residents, giving priority to projects to confront Turkish threats.
The decision included instructing all local DAA councils, bodies, committees, and institutions to prepare emergency plans to confront any threats and challenges.
Co-Chair of the DAA General Council Farid Atti stated that the declaration of a state of emergency was taken due to the daily Turkish attacks and threats that affect DAA civilians, workers, and service centers such as electricity and water stations. All civil institutions should be prepared to defend the people of North and East Syria from Turkish attacks, said Atti.
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He also appealed to people of North and East Syria, inside and outside Syria, to cooperate with the DAA in repelling any attacks.
Deputy Co-Chair of the DAA Executive Council Hamdan al-Abed called on the United Nations, European Union, and human rights organizations to hold Turkey accountable for its violations.
In October 2019, Turkey and its proxies in the SNA, a coalition of militias, several of them with extremist ideologies, formed and funded by Turkey, invaded the cities of Rish Ayno (Ras al-Ayn) and Tel Abyad in North and East Syria, displacing hundreds of thousands of civilians.
Since the invasion, dozens of Turkish military bases have been established in those areas. The bases are guarded by the SNA who are equipped with armored vehicles and heavy weapons. Additionally, a large number of Turkish commandos are reportedly stationed in the region.
Demographic change and the Turkification of the area continue, with residents being forced to learn the Turkish language, the names of public facilities being replaced with Turkish ones and the hoisting of the Turkish flag over them.
Other human rights abuses continue as well. Turkish-backed factions continue to burn agricultural crops, kidnap civilians for ransom, extort business and families for large sums of money, and engage in torture, murder, and sexual assault.