European States must Review Policies in Supporting Parties that violate Basic Human Rights
Since the beginning of August, SNHR has recorded an alarming escalation in arbitrary arrest and enforced-disappearance rates and oppression of freedoms by Self-management forces (Primarily the Democratic Union Party (PYD) forces – a branch for the Kurdistan Workers’ Party) in the areas that are under its control of Al Hasaka and Aleppo governorates. Arrests and oppression concentrated mainly in the cities of Al Qamishli and Amouda in Al Hasaka governorate and Ifreen and its villages in the suburbs of Aleppo governorate which reflected on various life aspects as freedom of journalistic and political activism deteriorated for all opposers of the policies of the PYD.
We recorded that Self-management forces arrested no less than 186 individuals Between 1 August and 17 August most of whom were arrested for conscription and combat purposes. This has been an ongoing policy since January 2014. The difference, however, that we recorded no less than 49 cases of arbitrary arrest over dissidence, expressing opposing opinions, or practicing political or civil activities that go against the mindset of the self-management forces and its founding party.
The arrests involved mainly politicians and workers who are affiliated to Yekiti party. Additionally, the chairman of the Kurdish National Council and the Kurdistan Democratic Party was arrested as well as media activists, writers, and civilians who participated in demonstrations or criticized the policies of the PYD.
We noticed that Self-management forces adopts a similar policy to the Syrian regime’s with regard to arrest where there are no arrest warrants and the arrests are carried out through abductions in the streets, markets, and public places or even raiding headquarters of political parties and civil activists without any judicial orders. Furthermore, we have recorded that a number of detainees have been subjected to a brutal beating as they are being arrested in addition to death threats and burning properties. In some cases, we received information about individuals who got hired (similar to what the Syrian regime do with what are commonly known as Shabiha) to raid and trash headquarters of parties and civil activists and assault, beat, and threat the people who work there.