UK activist who joined Kurdish force against ISIS in Northern Syria to speak on International Women’s Day at University of Leicester

Posted by pt91 at Mar 07, 2017 12:27 PM |
Panel event examining women’s prominent role in the Rojava revolution to be held on Wednesday 8 March

Issued by University of Leicester Press Office on 7 March 2017

UK activist Kimberley Taylor, who has joined Kurdish forces fighting ISIS in Syria, will be one of the speakers at an event being held on International Women’s Day at the University of Leicester.

The panel event ‘Resistance and Living Utopia: Women’s Liberation and Demographic Autonomy in Syrian Kurdistan’ on Wednesday 8 March will examine the Rojava revolution taking place in Northern Syria. The revolution has been characterised by the prominent role played by women both on the battlefield and within the newly formed democratic political system.

Women are involved at all levels and in all areas of the democratic project: in the cooperative economy, in the direct participatory democratic councils and at the front-line of the military campaign against ISIS.

Dr Omer Tekdemir, Research Associate in the School of History, Politics and International Relations, is chairing the event. He said: “By holding this event as part of International Women's Day, we aim to make more people in the University and in the city of Leicester aware of exactly what is taking place in Rojava.

“Women are at the centre of the revolution where they are fighting both to protect land from ISIS and promote women’s equality in the region.

“The panel event will examine the ideological and political framework of the struggle and then offer the chance to hear first-hand from a woman who is working on the ground for the Kurdish Women Protection Units.

“There will be a questions and answer session with the audience at the end of the presentations where the issues raised can be investigated further. We hope that as many people as possible will join us to learn about a revolution with women at its heart that is happening right now.”

Kimberley, who is originally from Blackburn, is currently working with the Kurdish Women Protection Units (YPJ) media team. She will be speaking via Skype.

Also speaking at the event will be Isabel Käser, a PhD student at SOAS in London where she is writing her thesis on the Kurdish women’s movement, and Elif Sarican, a member of the Kurdistan Students’ Union UK.

Professor Julie Coleman, Pro-Vice Chancellor and Head of College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities, University of Leicester, will present the opening speech.

The event will take place on Wednesday 8 March from 5.30pm to 7.30pm in the Attenborough Tower Lecture Theatre 1.

To register please email


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