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KURDWATCH, February 25, 2015—On February 19, 2015, the Kurdish Decision-making Body met in al‑Qamishli and selected five members each for the committee to reform the local administration and the committee on military issues [further information]. Four members of each committee belong to TEV‑DEM, one member of each committee is from one of the parties expelled from the Kurdish National Council [further information]. The Kurdish National Council will soon name four additional members to each committee.

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KURDWATCH, February 24, 2015—On February 15, 2015, employees of the Asayiş, the security service of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), forcibly recruited the student Luʾay Muhammad Amin ʿAli (b. 1989 in Tall Maʿruf) in downtown al‑Qamishli. He was transferred to the PYD’s People’s Defense Units (YPG).

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KURDWATCH, February 24, 2015—On February 15, 2015, supporters of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) commemorated the 1999 arrest of Abdullah Öcalan, the chairman of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). Approximately two thousand people took part in a demonstration in ʿAfrin to mark the anniversary.

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KURDWATCH, February 21, 2015—On February 15, 2015, supporters of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) commemorated the 1999 arrest of Abdullah Öcalan, the chairman of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). To mark this occasion, PYD members forced all store owners in al‑Qamishli to close their businesses or face a large fine. The power supply to several streets was interrupted to substantiate the demand.

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KURDWATCH, February 19, 2015—On February 7, 2015, employees of the Asayiş, the security service of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), forcibly recruited Khalaf Muhammad ʿAli ʿAskar (b. 1996 in al‑Malikiyah) at a checkpoint in al‑Malikiyah. When relatives of the Kurdistan Democratic Party – Syria (PDK‑S) member approached the PYD’s People’s Defense Units and demanded his return, they were told they would see their son again in six months.

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KURDWATCH, February 18, 2015—On February 9, 2015, the women’s organization Yekîtiya Star, which has close ties to the Democratic Union Party, received authorization from the Committee for Party Affairs for the PYD-appointed transitional administration of the canton of Jazirah to form a political party.

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KURDWATCH, February 18, 2015—Between January 27 and February 10, 2015, fighters for the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the Democratic Union Party’s (PYD) People’s Defense Units (YPG), in cooperation with Peshmerga forces, expelled Islamic State (IS) fighters from all of the territories in the vicinity of ʿAyn al‑ʿArab (Kobanî) that were under PYD control prior to their capture by the IS. In addition, several Arab villages south of the city were also conquered. Numerous residents fled for fear of retaliation. On February 10, Kurdish fighters had advanced up to forty five kilometers eastward and were therefore within twenty kilometers of Tall Abyad (Girê Sipî).

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KURDWATCH, February 12, 2015 – On February 5, 2015, the Kurdish decision-making body met in al‑Qamishli and formed three committees. The first is tasked with drafting bylaws for the decision-making body, the second will focus on a reform of the local administration, and the third is concerned with military questions. Nasruddin Ibrahim, secretary of the Kurdish Democratic Party in Syria (el‑Partî), did not take part in the session. According to information obtained by KurdWatch, there is considerable criticism of Ibrahim inside the party because he supported the TEV-DEM candidates and thus brought about the break with the Kurdish National Council [further information].

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KURDWATCH, February 10, 2015—On February 1, 2015, the legislative council of the transitional administration for the canton of Jazirah, which was appointed by the Democratic Union Party (PYD) specified March 13,  2015 as the date for local elections. A total of fourteen electoral districts were announced.

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KURDWATCH, February 10, 2015—On February 4, 2015, employees of the Asayiş, the security service of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), forcibly recruited young men between the ages of eighteen and thirty for the PYD’s People’s Defense Units (YPG). The recruitment took place at several checkpoints in al‑Qamishli. An Asayiş employee told the news agency ARA News that one hundred fifty people were arrested and distributed among the YPG training camps.

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New interview:
Ahmad Mustafa, former member of the dissident Youth Movement of Aleppo: »I wish that international human rights organizations would put pressure on the PYD so that they would return my son to me«

KURDWATCH, Februar 4, 2015—At the beginning of the Syrian revolution, Ahmad Muhammad Mustafa, b. 1977 in Khaltan near ʿAfrin, became involved with the dissident Youth Movement of Aleppo. To punish him, the PKK had his wife murdered and kidnapped his son. To this day, Ahmad Mustafa is wanted by the PKK. He has been living abroad since 2013.

[Read more]

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