The Turkish state-backed Syrian Turkmen Brigades (Samarkand) kidnapped seven civilians on Sunday in the villages of Kefer, Sefera, and Goran, in the town of Jindirês in Afrin (Efrîn), northern Syria.
The names of the kidnapped civilians are as follows: Şiyar Xelo, Almaz Hec Ebdo, Hesen Eyûb, Emîna Eyûb, Egîd Mistefa Xelo, Murad Xelîl Murad, Murad Xelo.
There is no further information about the current situation of the kidnapped. More than 40 civilians have been abducted in these villages since Friday, according to local reports.
Since March 2018, Turkish armed forces and Turkish-backed militias and forces have been present in Afrin. A recent United Nations Syrian Commission of Inquiry report confirmed that the Turkish-backed Syrian National Army (SNA) has been committing war crimes in Afrin. These crimes include abductions, disappearances, and gender-based sexual violence. Turkey was also held responsible for these actions.
The Afrin Human Rights Organisation released its report in September of this year assessing the situation in Afrin. According to the report, the armed groups in Afrin committed crimes of hostage-taking, inhumane treatment, torture, pillaging, kidnapping civilians for ransom, placing civilians in indefinite detention and also blackmailing civilians under instructions from Turkey’s National Intelligence Organisation (MIT).
Between June and September 2020, 139 civilians, nineteen of them women, were abducted by rebel groups in Afrin.