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Al-Malikiyah: YPG erects checkpoints prior to the Kurdish National Council’s demonstration

KURDWATCH, May 31, 2013—Ongoing fighting between the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and government troops in the week from May 18 to 24, 2013, resulted once again in numerous dead and injured. On May 24, demonstrators throughout the country demanded the fall of the regime. They gathered under the common slogan »Deceivers of the resistance«, a protest against the open involvement of the Lebanese Hizbullah on several fronts. This week, supporters of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) only organized one demonstration in al‑Qamishli, at which they demanded the release of Abdullah Öcalan. In al‑Qamishli, one demonstration also took place in each of the districts of al‑ʿAntariyah (organized by various youth groups) and Munir Habib (organized by the Kurdish National Council). In ʿAmudah, there was only one dissident demonstration organized by various youth groups, including Avahî. In al‑Hasakah, two demonstrations took place, one organized by the Kurdish National Council, the other by Arab groups. The Kurdish National Council organized one demonstration in both ad‑Darbasiyah and ʿAyn al‑ʿArab (Kobanî). The Kurdish National Council’s weekly demonstrations in al‑Malikiyah and al‑Maʿbada (Girkê Legê) took place on Saturday; only several dozen demonstrators participated in al‑Maʿbada. In al‑Qamishli and al‑Malikiyah, demonstrators once again carried banners demanding the release of political prisoners from PYD‑prisons. Prior to the Kurdish National Council’s demonstration in al‑Malikiyah, members of the Democratic Union Party’s (PYD) People’s Defense Units (YPG) erected numerous checkpoints and searched vehicles, particularly on the main access roads and in the city center. There were no protests in al‑Jawadiyah (Çil Axa), al‑Qahtaniyah (Tirbesipî), ʿAfrin, or Raʾs al‑ʿAyn (Serê Kaniyê), nor in the mainly Kurdish districts in Aleppo and Damascus.

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