SDF women will transform Middle East, says female commander fighting IS

SDF Commander Rojda Felat

Rojda Felat, the woman commander of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) coordinating the operation to liberate Raqqa from the Islamic State group, has said that women in the SDF will become the Middle East’s most significant force for change.

Speaking on occasion of International Women’s Day to Hawar News Agency (ANHA), Felat said, “As the SDF, we are raising the resistance against all mentalities that want to subordinate women.”

“Daesh [Arabic acronym for Islamic State] has turned Raqqa into the castle of tyranny. Under the leadership of women, we are marching towards their castle of tyranny,” Felat stated.

“In the Middle East women are assigned traditional roles such as wife, mother, house-worker. With the establishment of the SDF, however, this has changed and traditional roles have been turned upside down.

“The approach of Daesh [to women] and the approach of the capitalist system is essentially the same. Both mentalities utilise womanhood, expose women and exploit them,” Felat argued.

“With the SDF, the women of our region have taken developments by the scruff of the neck and left their imprint on the direction of the battle. As a result, women have re-established themselves in every sphere of life.”

Rojda Felat also said that their resistance against the Islamic State was not only a military fight, but also an ideological one against all repressive approaches.