Located 40km west of Raqqa, people in the the city of Tabqa are celebrating the second anniversary of their liberation from ISIS.
The citizens of Tabqa in Syria are celebrating their city’s second anniversary of its liberation from ISIS’ control. The celebration, which took place in the Sports City Stadium, was attended by civil and military delegations from across the city, who came to Tabqa to celebrate this occasion, which they see as a moment of salvation from the most notorious terrorist group in recent history.
“We came here to participate in the second anniversary of the liberation of the city from ISIS’ injustice,” said Jihad Mohammed, a member of the Women’s Committee in the Democratic Union Party (PYD). “Women have played a big role despite ISIS’ injustices in the field of management and [rebuilding] institutions and in returning the city to what it once was.”
Attendees of the celebration, which coincides with Labour Day in the Middle East, said that the workers play a significant role in the rehabilitation of Tabqa.
“This event coincides with Labour Day, and our workers began two years ago, after the liberation, to rehabilitate the city,” said Shiekh Hamed al-Faraj, the joint head of the Tabqa Legislative Council. “On this occasion, I bless our workers, the city and its people with this holiday and for their liberation from terrorism.”
The city of Tabqa was liberated by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the International Coalition in 2017, following two months of battles between the forces and ISIS. Following its liberation, the city began to welcome Syrians who were displaced from their homes in nearby cities and towns.
“We, those displaced from the city of peace, Afrin, thank our brothers because they helped us and welcomed us,” said Ahmed al-Umar, a displaced person from Afrin, who now lives in Tabqa. “The darkness of terrorism will be expelled from all of Syria, and as we see these celebrations in the Tabqa, we will see more joy after expelling ISIS from Syria.” Ever since the city’s liberation, NGOs and civil society organisations have been launching projects throughout the city to rehabilitate its infrastructure and aid its citizens who have suffered under ISIS’ rule. These initiatives have shown that the Syrian people will continue to be resilient and united despite the hardships that they have faced during the dark days of ISIS.