Funeral services for Bethnahrin National Council member Furat Tuma assassinated by Turkish drone strike in North and East Syria

ZALIN, Syria — On Wednesday, a solemn funeral was held for martyr Furat Danial Tuma in the presence of esteemed officials, members of the Bethnahrin National Council (Mawtbo Umthoyo d’Bethnahrin, MUB), and various institutions of the Autonomous Administration North and East Syria (AANES). The ceremony was attended by a large gathering of the Syriac (Aramean–Assyrian–Chaldean) public to pay their respects to Martyr Tuma, who was assassinated on Tuesday by a Turkish drone strike on the car he was driving along the Zalin (Qamishli)–Qabre Hewore (Qantaniyah) road.

Killed alongside Tuma were Co-Chair of the Zalin Canton Council Yusra Darwish and Deputy Co-Chair Laiman Shwesh. Gabriel Chamoun, the other Co-Chair of the Zalin Canton Council, was injured in the attack but managed to exit the vehicle before it was struck by two additional missiles.

The procession honoring Martyr Tuma commenced in front of his residence in Zalin’s Armenian Quarter and traversed the city streets to the heartfelt melodies of the Syriac Cultural Society and the mournful tunes dedicated to his memory. The Sutoro (Syriac Security Forces) ensured the protection and orderliness of the procession, which featured cars adorned with pictures of Martyr Tuma, as well as mourners who joined the procession on foot.

Upon reaching the city’s Chaldean church, a prayer service was conducted. The service was led by Father Samir Kanon, the pastor of the church, with the assistance of Father Aho Ibrahim.

During his sermon, Father Samir spoke eloquently about Martyr Tuma’s exceptional qualities and virtuous character. Furat Danial Tuma exemplified love, selflessness, and devotion, ultimately sacrificing his own life for the sake of his land and people.

Following the prayer service, the mourners proceeded to Martyrs’ Cemetery where a commemorative ceremony took place. The ceremony commenced with a minute of silence to honor the souls of all martyrs, followed by an inspiring speech delivered by Nazira Goreya, Co-Chair of the Syriac Union Party (SUP). In her address, Goreya expressed the community’s deep pride in the martyrs who have sanctified the earth with their selfless blood. She reaffirmed the SUP’s commitment to following in their footsteps and preserving their sacrifices while steadfastly protecting the land of the Syriac (Aramean–Assyrian–Chaldean) people.

Vivian Bahho Oussi, Co-Chair of the Executive Council of Gozarto (Jazira) Region, delivered a moving speech emphasizing the unity formed by the shedding of blood on this sacred land. Through the martyrdom of individuals like Furat, Yusra, and Laiman, the Syriac blood intertwined with that of the Kurdish and Arabic communities, solidifying the unity of their shared lives and common destiny.

Yacoub Daoud, representing the Foundation for the Families of the Assyrian Martyrs, expressed the community’s immense pride in all of its martyrs. They have become beacons of inspiration for future generations through their selfless acts of giving, he said. Their lives, which they sacrificed for the people and the land, remain the most precious gift they could bestow, Daoud added.

As a testament to Martyr Tuma’s heroic sacrifice and his comrades’ contributions, the Syriac–Assyrian Martyrs’ Families Foundation presented the martyrdom document to his family. This gesture ensured that the martyr’s body would find its resting place alongside his fellow fallen heroes, who paved the way to freedom and victory with their blood.

On Thursday morning, a funeral prayer was conducted for Martyr Tuma’s soul was held at the Chaldean church in Zalin. Subsequently, those in attendance gathered at Mar Gabriel Hall to receive condolences from delegations who had come to pay their respects and fulfill their duty of expressing sympathy.