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Al-Qamishli: PYD‑supporters threaten activists

KURDWATCH, August 1, 2012—Nationwide protests on July 27, 2012 resulted again in numerous dead and injured. Throughout the country, demonstrators united under the slogan »Resistance of both capitals« took to the streets to demand the fall of the regime. In the Kurdish regions, the Democratic Union Party (PYD) and several youth groups protested under their own slogan »Freedom for the leader Abdullah Öcalan«. In al‑Qamishli, one demonstration took place in each of the districts of Qanat Suwais, al‑ʿAntariyah (organized by the Biratî youth group and Kurdish National Council youth groups), Kurnish (organized by supporters of Kurdish Future Movement, which has split, and various independent youth groups), and Qudurbak (organized by Arab youth groups). Numerous members of the security forces were present in the city center so that no demonstration could take place there. Three additional protests began at the demonstrators' central meeting point at the Qamismo mosque in the western district of al‑Qamishli. The organizers were the PYD, the Kurdish National Council, and the Union of Kurdish Democratic Forces in Syria. In al‑ʿAntariyah, armed PYD supporters attacked several activists who were filming the demonstration. They pointed weapons at the activists and stole a laptop, a cell phone, and memory cards. Two days later the stolen equipment was returned. In ʿAmudah, three separate demonstrations took place, organized by the Kurdish National Council, the PYD, and various youth groups. In ʿAyn al‑ʿArab (Kobanî), which has been administered by Kurdish parties since July 19 [further information], two demonstrations took place, organized by the PYD and the Kurdish National Council. In al‑Hasakah there were four demonstrations. One central demonstration took place in each of the cities of al‑Malikiyah (Dêrik), al‑Qahtaniyah (Tirbesipî), ad‑Darbasiyah, al‑Maʿbada (Girkê Legê), al‑Jawadiyah (Çil Axa), and Raʾs al‑ʿAyn (Serê Kaniyê), as well as in the Kurdish districts of Shaykh Maqsud in Aleppo and Ruknuddin in Damascus. In al‑Malikiyah and al‑Maʿbada, the Friday demonstrations were organized by youth groups; as in recent months, the Kurdish National Council demonstrations took place on Saturday. Because of Ramadan, numerous demonstrations, especially in Aleppo and Damascus, were organized at night. There were no protests in ʿAfrin.

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