Kobane – The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) launched on November 6 a new military operation against the Islamic State (ISIS) in Raqqa city. Several SDF militias are participating in the campaign, known as the Euphrates Wrath Operation, among them the Kurdish Women’s Protection Units (YPJ).
Nisrin Abdullah, the YPJ’s official spokeswoman, told ARA News in an exclusive interview that their priority is securing freedom for the people of Raqqa, in particular the city’s maltreated women.
“The Women’s Protection Units is one of the main factions participating in the anti-ISIS battle for Raqqa,” Abdullah told ARA News on Wednesday. “The YPJ have experience in combat and military operations. We will play an effective role in the campaign.”
“The Raqqa operation is highly important to us. Raqqa is [symbolically] different from any other city, as it’s the capital of the self-declared caliphate,” Abdullah added.
According to the Kurdish spokeswoman, the YPJ is obliged to take part in in the battle for Raqqa, having been called forth by the city’s long-oppressed women. “We assure them that we will fight on the frontline, until Raqqa is liberated,” she said.
“The YPJ have participated in most of the military campaigns in Rojava and northern Syria. Our women have joined the frontline and fought through intense battles,” Abdullah told ARA News. “The YPJ have always played a leading role, especially in the fight against ISIS and in the liberation movement.”
“We earlier fought for Manbij and participated in liberating of its people, especially its women, from suppression by ISIS terrorists. Later on, we handed the city over to its people and withdrew to our headquarters,” Abdullah continued.
The YPJ spokesperson told ARA News that capturing Raqqa would fatally wound ISIS. “[The city’s] liberation would break the extremist group’s will and eventually lead to its collapse. However, this won’t be an easy battle as ISIS has worked on fortifying the city. We expect the enemy to be highly prepared to fight for its main stronghold,” she said.
Abdullah concluded her remarks, saying: “We are freedom fighters, and we won’t stop until we’ve liberated our people from the terror groups.”