ANHA reports that a woman, named Sureya Berekat (65), was abducted in the town of Jindires (Cindirês) in the Afrin (Efrîn) canton of northern and eastern Syria, controlled by Turkey and its supported armed militias since 2018.
Sureya Berekat was reportedly abducted for her alleged connections with the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES). It is not known where Berekat was taken.
Unfortunately, Bereket is not the first woman who has gone ‘missing’ in Afrin since Turkey took control of the region.
According to the latest information provided by the Afrin Human Rights Organisation, 40 women were killed, 128 women were injured, 60 women were raped between 2018 and 2019 in Afrin and 279 women were abducted. Five out of 60 women who were raped committed suicide.
According to the Syrian-Afrin Human Rights Organisation, more than 7,810 people have been abducted in Afrin, and the fate of 3,000 people is still ‘unknown’ and nearly 50 people are being held in Turkish prisons. It has been reported that some of the people who are missing had been kidnapped by members of the Turkish intelligence units and some by Turkish-backed mercenaries.
In 2018, Turkey launched military operations in Afrin and Turkish armed forces and Turkish-backed militias have been present in the region since March 2018. The UN also detailed extensive rights violations that had taken place in Afrin in a report it published last year.
Last year, the United Nations Syrian Commission of Inquiry report confirmed that the Turkish-backed Syrian National Army (SNA) has been committing war crimes in Afrin and Ras al-Ayn (Serêkaniyê). These crimes included abductions, disappearances and gender-based sexual violence. Turkey was also held responsible for such actions.