THROUGHOUT THROUGHOUT history, all societies have had to defend themselves from threats and attacks. However, in most societies, this task fell to men only. However, in Kurdish society women have always defended their land and people alongside men— such as in the historic resistance against ISIS in Rojava, where women played an important part.

After the Syrian regime pulled its forces out of Rojava, communes were established in districts and councils. It was necessary to establish self-defence forces so that the people of Rojava could defend themselves against all forms of violence. For women, who are oppressed by patriarchy and male violence, it was also necessary to establish women-specific communal self-defence forces.

The Women’s Communal Self-Defence Forces were organized in 2014, based on the concept that self-defence comes from self- training and access to a free personality, and that there is no use for weapons without free thought and a trained, free personality. The Women’s Communal Self-Defence Forces began to work voluntarily, without centralized organization, to defend areas that needed immediate protection. Later, they were organized under a committee.

Special meetings have been held for women to receive military training in order to defend themselves from all harms as women, children, and older people are confronted with. This is important in every society, but especially in a society that is confronted with war, because war typically addresses first women, children and older people.


The Women’s Communal Self-Defence Forces are responsible for having thorough knowledge of the security situation and current events in any given area.
Their work includes:

Facilitating community reconciliation by mediating disputes in their districts without taking sides.
2. Guarding public events and other large gatherings of people.
3. Participating in guarding barriers.
4. Documenting the number of immigrants to their province.
5. Investigating cases of prostitution and alerting security.


The first Conference of the Women’s communal self-defence forces was held on 2/8/2016, with 400 women participating. The conference evaluated the progress of the units and discussed organization, education, and other needs. After the conclusion of their conference, the Women’s communal self-defence forces have become more organized, and are ready to face any emergency they may face.