EU Parliament Holds Conference to Support Rebuilding Kobane

On the 1st of July the European Parliament, under the auspice of the European Parliament’s president Martin Schulz, held a conference for the purpose of bringing the many NGOs and human rights organisations that are currently working in Kobane, or wish to participate in the reconstruction process, and consolidate the Development roadmap. A number of prominent politicians including Anver Muslum, the co-president of Kobane, Vassilis Bontosoglou, the former ambassador to Syria, Dimitrios Papadimoulis, the Vice President of the European Parliament- whose brilliant speech on pressuring Turkey to open the humanitarian corridor and that Turkey has a moral duty to address the PKK issue peacefully- was a stand out speech among the chorus of loud and prominent voices calling for support for Kobane.

The NGOs who attended included: Geneva Call- Switzerland, Medecins Sans Frontiers, Reconstruct, Development, Peace-Middle East, Handicap International, MAG (Mines Advisory Group) International, HALO Trust (the oldest de-mining organisation in the world), Heyva Sor a Kurdistan, Article 25-UK, Architects Without Borders, Medico International, IMMAP, IMPR, Churches Union, and Platform London among others. Millions of dollars were pledged collectively and the NGOs have adopted projects or proposed projects to build schools, hospitals, health clinics, academies, women’s centres and other essential infrastructure.

The conference was an important milestone in the reconstruction process, as well as firmly establishing and reiterating international support for Kobane and Rojava, especially following the recent attacks by ISIS. The dominant themes discussed included the ever awe inspiring heroism of the YPG-YPJ (the speech by Eleni Theocharous, MEP for Christian Democrats was brilliant and extremely on point in this regard), the need to demonstrate gratitude to the Kurds for their great sacrifice by rebuilding Kobane, and most importantly to open the humanitarian corridor into Kobane from Turkey.

If ISIS and it’s supporters thought that the massacre of babies, toddlers and mothers was going to deter the humanitarian efforts of those genuinely concerned with Kobane, they miscalculated. If ISIS and it’s ally, and number one supporter Turkey, think that massacring entire families sleeping in their beds would stop the global determination for Kobane’s reconstruction, they calculated wrong. The reconstruction WILL continue and it WILL succeed.

Finally, the conference concluded with a resolution to recognize the recent massacre in Kobane as a genocide.

The success of this conference was based on the countless hours and people who worked behind the scenes tirelessly to ensure it’s great success.

Hawzhin Azeez

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