Administration of North and East Syria recalls Sayfo Genocide, condemns ongoing threat of extermination posed by Turkish policies

ZALIN, Syria — The Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) issued a statement reaffirming its commitment to the values of coexistence and fraternity among peoples. The statement commemorated the 1915 Sayfo Genocide perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire and its allied tribal forces against the Syriac (Aramean–Assyrian–Chaldean) and highlighted the ongoing threat of extermination faced by the Syriac (Aramean–Assyrian–Chaldean) communities.

The Sayfo Genocide occurred concurrently with the Armenian and Greek genocides.

AANES emphasizes that the Sayfo was the manifestation of the Ottoman Empire’s exclusionary and genocidal policies. It likewise condemned the Turkish state for perpetuating the Ottoman policies of repression and exclusion as evidenced by the situation of minority populations in Iraq, Syria, and Turkey itself, including in the historic region of Tur Abdin.

AANES warned that violence targeting Syriacs (Arameans–Assyrians–Chaldeans), Kurds, Arabs, and other groups is the direct result of Turkish policies aiming to reinforce the ideology of “One people, one language, one flag, one state”.

The AANES statement underscored the need for unity among ethnic and religious groups who have suffered from genocides and massacres orchestrated by Turkey. By standing together, they can counter the ongoing hostilities and ensure their continued presence and security in their homelands.

The statement honored the memory of the martyrs of the Sayfo Genocide and all victims of Ottoman and Turkish genocides in the region. It affirmed that the solidarity, unity, and collective struggle of oppressed peoples will pave the way for achieving their aspirations, defeating the projects of extermination that target them, and liberating their occupied territories.