How to read Syria’s latest Isis propaganda video
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Syria’s state media outlet, SANA, has released a new propaganda video entitled “The People’s Protection Units” (YPG) in which a bearded man in military fatigues stands before an Iraqi flag, proclaiming the group is fighting “the occupiers” and “the enemy” in the country’s current crisis.
The clip, titled “The Resistance of the People”, shows an Iraqi soldier in the foreground who is identified as “Mohammed” and an Iraqi armed forces officer who is referred to as “the commander”.
“The resistance of the people” then declares, in Arabic, that the YPG “is the resistance of all the oppressed peoples”.
The video then switches to a photo of a Kurdish fighter in uniform and the caption: “They are fighting against the occupiers, the enemy and the criminal occupiers.”
In the first minute of the clip, a masked man holds a rifle and then appears to fire at a group of Iraqi soldiers in uniform.
He says: “We will liberate you, and we will liberate our land.”
A second group of soldiers is then seen kneeling before the camera.
He also says: “[We] are defending our land, and the people of Iraq.”
The footage ends with an audio clip of a YPG fighter shouting: “The people of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS or Daesh) are the enemy, and they are the occupier.”
The group’s propaganda arm, SAA, said the video was released as part of a “rescue operation” to secure Kobani, a Kurdish town on the border with Turkey.
“The Syrian people, as you can see, are in danger,” said the SAA spokesman, Sajida al-Bakr, in a statement on Tuesday.
“We are working to secure the town and liberate the people.
We will be taking a long, hard fight against the enemy.”
The SAA is also believed to have been behind the deadly August 21 attack on the Turkish consulate in Istanbul, which killed 35 people.
The attack, which was carried out by ISIL militants, took place as the Turkish government was trying to take control of Kobani.
Turkey, which had offered humanitarian aid to Kobani residents in the city, is also trying to retake the town, a key ISIS stronghold.
“This is a continuation of a campaign of war by Turkey and the Syrian government, which is aimed at taking Kobani,” Sajid al-Turk, head of the US-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said.
The SANA news agency also reported that a military spokesman for the SDF, Col. Ammar al-Rajabi, confirmed that the SPU was behind the August 21 assault on the consulate.
The spokesperson told Al Jazeera: “Our forces are taking all possible measures to defend Kobani and to liberate the residents of Kobane.”
The YPG has repeatedly said it is not affiliated with ISIL and has called on its fighters to fight alongside Kurdish forces.
On Monday, it released a video in which it accused Turkish security forces of carrying out a “massacre” in Kobani on August 21.
The footage showed men in civilian clothes carrying a woman who appeared to be pregnant.
“They executed a baby who had a gun inside its belly,” the footage said.
“A military car was destroyed by our soldiers.
They took away the baby, put the baby in a garbage bag and threw it in the garbage.”
A statement from the Sûretum Brigades, the armed wing of the YPG, said in the video that it would fight to liberate Kobani from “the Turkish occupation forces”.
“We call on the people to resist these occupiers with our weapons, and to fight against them with the most stringent of arms,” the SBA statement said.
On Wednesday, the Turkish parliament approved a controversial bill aimed at boosting the role of the SAB in the war against ISIL.
The bill would also increase the number of armed members of the Turkish army in the SOB to 150, the Süddeutsche Zeitung reported.
“It will increase the role and capabilities of the armed forces, and also increase their role in combating the Daesh (IS) terrorist organisation,” Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday, adding that the measure would “protect our country”.
“If this bill passes, the military will become a part of the defence,” he said.
But Turkey has accused the YPG of using civilians as human shields, a charge the YPG has vehemently denied.
A senior Kurdish official said on Tuesday that Turkish authorities were trying to turn the fight against ISIL into a war between the YPG and Turkey.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that Turkey was trying “to create an atmosphere where it’s possible to use the Kurds as human shield”.
The SBA said the Turkish decision to send a “human shield” was a sign that the government was preparing for war with the Kurds.
“Turkey is planning to
Syria’s state media outlet, SANA, has released a new propaganda video entitled “The People’s Protection Units” (YPG) in which a…