Statement of the KNC General Secretary about the fights in Qamişlo

Since Wednesday, the 20th of April 2016, Qamişlo city witnesses fights between armed groups affiliated to different bodies of the regime and the so called “National Defense Forces” on the one hand, and PYD-related armed groups on the other hand, in which all kinds of weapons, from small arms to heavy weapons, are employed by both sides. Additionally the regime uses helicopters. The shootings caused an atmosphere of fear among the population and many people were killed by snipers on rooftops, most of them civilians. Each of the two sides tries to expand the areas controlled, while the safety of civilians and the stability of the city are decreasing, the electricity and communication services are cut, all shops and public services, like bakerys, are closed. This leaves the city in a state of chaos and destroys the fragile stability previously provided compared to other Syrian locations. We, the Kurdish National Council in Syria, strongly condemn the use of lethal weapons by all sides inside the city, the closure of streets, public services and markets imposed by the regime as well as its attempts to regain dictatorial powers in this peaceful city which was a model of cohabitation of Arabs, Kurds, Assyrians, Armenians, Muslims, Christians and Yezidi. We request our people and our political and social forces to defend the value of a communal life, to engage in the creation of an atmosphere of mutual understanding and to cooperate peacefully to preserve the social peace which should be guaranteed to and respected by all.

The General Secretary of the Kurdish National Council in Syria
Qamişlo, April 21, 2016