Kurdish Red Crescent regional headquarters bombed in Afrin

by The Region    


The Kurdish Red Crescent (Heyva Sor a Kurdistane) headquarters in the area of Rajo was bombed today, after being targeted by the Turkish Air-force, reports ANF News.

Founded in 1993 in Bochum, Germany, the Kurdish Red Crescent has operated on the ground in Syria for decades, providing humanitarian aid and crisis support to areas across Kurdish populated areas in West Asia. With a presence in over 14 countries, the Kurdish Red Crescent has provided emergency healthcare assistance across the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria, and has various humanitarian sections in Deir Ez-Zor, Hassakah, Afrin, and Kobane.

But on the 20th of January, one of their stations was attacked in the village of Rajo, in the heavily bombed district of Jindirese.

"The humanitarian workers that were stationed there were targeted by the air-force of the state of Turkey", Jwan Polat, the general director of Afrin Hospital told The Region. "As the jets approached the humanitarian workers, they quickly did what they could to evade the attack, and hid to protect themselves. Thankfully, they made it out alive and were able to be escorted away from the site by two vehicles".

Polat says that humanitarian workers have been burdened with little resources and far too many emergency visits to Afrin hospital since the Turkish military and Turkey-backed FSA forces began to attack Afrin, Syria.

"Everyday we have to tend to civilians targetted by Turkey's air-campaign. For 16 days, civilians have had to live under terror. Many civilians are moving away from the outskirts and into the main city to escape the fate of injury, or even possibly death, and find sanctuary in the city."

Polat has also expressed concern with the heightened number of daily casualties in the war.

"Just yesterday, we had to deal with a case of 6 deaths coming from one family. We had many come from Haze, RaJo. For the past few days, we have had to tend to 345 of the wounded, and 146 have, unfortunately, passed away."

This isn't the first time that vehicles belonging to the Kurdish Red Crescent have been targetted. On the 21st of January, an ambulance operating in the Jinderes area was also targetted after trying to tend to the wounded. Ambulances operate in Bilbile, Shiye, Rajo, Jinderes, Tiljemal, Fafin, Kolko and Khelil. According to ANF News, it is standard practice for the Kurdish Red Crescent to transport civilians to Afrin City Hospital.

"I would like to know one thing," Polat told The Region, "Afrin used to be one of the safest places in Syria. It has protected people both from the regime and from the tyranny of rebel groups. But for the past 16 days, it has been continuously attacked. Why?"

"Whatever explanation might be given, we call on the International community, and human rights organizations to raise their voices and condemn this assault on civilians," Polat said

"We also plead for people to donate to the Kurdish Red Crescent, to provide us with your support. We are in dire need of medicines and basic equipment to respond to this desperate humanitarian situation" he concluded.