Defiant People of Kobane Return to Destroyed City

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Kobane , Syria
February 6, 2015

Large numbers of Kurdish refugees returned from the Turkish city of Suruc to their hometown of Kobane .
ISIS withdrew from the city in late January under the weight of attacks from Kurdish fighters and airstrikes by international coalition.
Video shows refugees queuing to enter Kobane through a border crossing and walking amid the rubble and others cheering for Kurdish fighters.

Two interviewed returning refugees said that they are determined to stay in Kobane and that they are not scared of ISIS. Video also shows large-scale destruction in the city.


Wide of family walking amid destroyed buildings
Wide of boy carrying large bag
Various of refugees queuing to enter Kobane

SOUNDBITE (Kurdish, Woman) Unnamed refugee returning to Kobane
01:33 – 02:24
God willing, we shall achieve victory. We could no longer bear living in the tents, so we returned to Kobane because it is our land. We will never abandon Kobane because it is our honor. We will live amid this destruction. We will set up tents and live in Kobane . We are not afraid of ISIS. We used to be scared of it before, but now, we are not scared of anyone. Whoever wants to come, let them come. We are not scared of ISIS or anyone else.”
Various of refugees queueing at border crossing
Wide of refugees standing next to fighter
Wide of refugees walking through into Kobane
Wide of fighters

SOUNDBITE (Kurdish, Man) Unnamed refugees returning to Kobane
03:50 – 04:25

“I am from Kobane , and now I return to my city. I am returning to my land and hometown. Long live the YPG [Kurdish People’s Protection Units]. Long live the leader Abdullah Ocalan. Kobane has overcome terrorism. I am not scared. I am now returning to Kobane , the city of resistance.”

Various of people in pickup trucks cheering for Kurdish fighters
Wide of destroyed house and car
Wide of destroyed homes