Cohorts of Kobani and Rojava Universities Celebrate Their Graduation

Hundreds of students attending school at Kobani and Rojava Universities in Kobani and Qamishli respectively celebrated their graduations. On October 28, the first ever cohort of graduates from Kobani University completed their studies. The university was opened in 2017, and represents a major step for the region in terms of education. Just years prior, these same students would not have been able to study in their own language. The university now has 640 students studying in 11 departments.

In Qamishli, just a few days later, over 500 students of Rojava University celebrated their graduations. The class of 2021 numbered at 160, but due to COVID-19 and security concerns, students from previous years were unable to celebrate their graduations. The graduates came from a variety of majors and departments, including the Faculty of Science, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Faculty of Agricultural Engineering, Petroleum and Petrochemicals, and others. 

The SDC and Its Allies Mark World Kobani Day

The Syrian Democratic Council (SDC), Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), and the other institutions of the AANES, as well as its international allies, celebrated World Kobani Day on November 1. The day celebrates the resistance of the YPG and YPJ, who were under a brutal siege by the terrorists of ISIS from September, 2014 to January, 2015. 

The battle ended in a costly defeat for ISIS and marked a major turning point in the conflict with the terrorist organization. It also led to the beginning of the partnership between what would become the SDF and the international US-led Coalition, which provided air support to YPG and YPJ forces on the ground. 

Since then, this partnership has only expanded, and led to the eventual territorial defeat of ISIS. Therefore, it is crucial that this day is acknowledged and respected annually, both for the sake of those who lost their lives to defeat ISIS, those who survived and continue to struggle for democracy and equality, and to celebrate the international partnership between North and East Syria and the US-led Coalition. 

COVID-19 Continues to Exacerbate the Economic Crisis

The Covid-19 pandemic has continued to inflict hardship on Syria. The region’s economic crisis has only been worsened by the effects of the pandemic. Hospitals continue to face shortages of oxygen and the amount of vaccines provided to North and East Syria remains far lower than that required for the region’s five million inhabitants. 

Due to the continuing spread of the virus, the Euphrates Region, which includes Kobani and Ayn Issa, instituted a total coronavirus lockdown between October 16 and October 25. This was replaced on October 26 with a partial lockdown to last until November 5. Gatherings are prohibited, but shops are allowed to be open 6 AM – 4 PM. Food stores in particular are open without restriction.