Internationalist Commune at the 2nd Middle East Youth Conference in Kobane

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For the next few days, the Internationalist Commune media commission have teamed up with the media of the Revolutionary Youth Movement in Rojava to report on the Conference of Middle-Eastern Youth which will be held in Kobane between the 20th and 23rd of February . This is the second time such a conference has been held, the first was in Amed in 2015, marking the conference as part of an on-going process aimed at sharing the struggles of people all over the region.

Yesterday, on the opening day of the conference, most participants gave a short speech, greeting the friends in attendance and explaining a little about the struggle in their home countries. Unfortunately not all friends participating in the conference were able to attend in person despite the best efforts of the organising committee. Problems with passports, combined with the repressive policies of the KDP and the Turkish state meant that friends from such places as Sudan and Yemen had to Skype into the conference with their messages of solidarity and support for the conferences aims.

Many of the friends giving statements on the opening day emphasized the roll of the Sehids in their struggles as well as condemning the isolation and imprisonment of Abdullah Öcalan. They also sent messages of support to those on hunger strike protesting this isolation, in particular Leyla Guven who has now been on hunger strike for 106 days.

In the late afternoon longer speeches were made by a representative of the youth council of the federation of North Eastern Syria as well as commanders from YPG and YPJ. Overall the first day had an atmosphere of celebration with many people wearing traditional clothing from their region. Today will be a more sombre day as the conference moves on to discuss the situations of the friends here in more depth, there will be a particular focus on the Arab Spring, Palestine and the Revolution in Northern and Eastern Syria.