Take care of yourself and my little one.. I'll be back - Narrative story. Image source: Lelun's own

Take care of yourself and my little one.. I’ll be back..!

“Five years have passed, and I am still waiting for him, counting the hours and minutes of every day passes until the time for the meeting comes, then I return empty-handed without any news about him. I do not know if he is alive or dead, but something tells me not to lose hope.”

This is how “Sarah/a pseudonym” describes waiting for her forcibly disappeared husband to come, after he was arrested by elements believed to be from the Turkish Intelligence Service in June 2018 in Afrin. Sarah continues:

“I do not know what happened, and if it was my fault that I encouraged him to return to the village, but I did not know that the situation would turn into the way it is now.”

She continued by saying:

After the Turkish “Olive Branch” operation and displacing us to the “Shahba” areas, I told him to go back with the people returning to Afrin, but he refused at first, so I packed the luggage before him with some family members to go back to the village and investigate the conditions of the people in the area.

In the beginning, we did not hear about arrests or anything like that when we arrived. The disappointment is that the armed elements were receiving the people and did not confront them at the time, in order to pounce on them as soon as they all returned. Here, I encouraged my husband to return, he refused again, until he agreed after a strong insistence. After he returned, me, my son and my husband were living quiet days in the village, until something happened that was not taken into account.

A month after his return, a high-ranking Turkish general accompanied by some armed elements came to the village and began a massive campaign of arrests of young men in order to regularize their situation, bearing in mind that my husband had no political relations or dealings with the former Autonomous Administration. I don’t know what exactly happened, but I still remember the features of that man. It became clear to me that he was Turkish after I heard his voice stuttering in Arabic, and what caught my attention was his saying:

“I know the Kurdish language, but I hate speaking it and everyone who speaks it.”

He said this provocatively to the young men of the village, and they took my husband and several other young men from the village. That image is still stuck in my mind. I wish I could have stopped that moment to catch him and not push him to his death. He hugged me and said to me:

“Take care of yourself and my little one, I will be back..!”

They told us that they would take them for a routine investigation and settle their situation and there was no need to be afraid or worried. My husband got into the car until it drove them away and they disappeared from my sight.

Days, weeks, and months passed, there was nothing new about my husband. We investigated his situation in the police stations and security centers, but we did not reach any results. At that time, I felt heartbreak and true remorse for what I had done, and what hurts me most is my son’s question every day:

“When will my father come back?!” He promised me he would buy me a bike, but he didn’t come and didn’t buy it.”

I reassure him that he has been away for a long time because he is traveling and will return soon to bring us money and buy you a bike.

What is painful is that I became the subject of blame by all family members, but I did not mean what happened. Does a person intend to make poison and drink it himself? My son and I are victims of what happened, and there is no way I can do anything.

I appeal to God before all creatures to take evil revenge on them! Because my husband is innocent and has no fault other than the fact that he is Kurdish, and there is no one who can hear our case except God. My husband is one of the victims of enforced disappearance, and I know nothing about his condition. I cannot do anything except pray to God in days and nights to know some news about him to reassure my heart.

I will wait him until the day comes when he knocks on the house’s door and my little one and I start running. Who among us will open the door first, so that we can immediately throw ourselves into his arms!!

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