Park in Syria’s Azaz named after Turkish official

AZAZ, Syria (North Press) – Factions of the Turkish-backed Syrian opposition opened on Thursday a park in the city of Azaz in Aleppo Governorate, northern Syria, naming it after a Turkish official.

Azaz and its countryside have been under the occupation of the Turkish forces and their affiliated armed opposition factions, known as the Syrian National Army (SNA), since July 2012. 

The park was named after the deputy Wali of the Turkish southeastern city of Kilis, Omer Yilmaz.

Azaz is administratively run by a local council that is affiliated with Kilis.

The issue received with widespread anger and outcry on the social media in light of the growing racism and racial discrimination against Syrians by the Turks.

“Naming the park after a Turkish official indicates to affiliation and lying down to Turkey,” an activist, who refused to be named for fear of security pursuit, said.

“There are several facilities and offices that are named after Turkish names including the Ottoman Park, Anadolu Center, and Gaziantep University,” the activist added.

This came within the policy of ‘Turkification’ Turkey has adopted since it has occupied many areas in northern Syria, including raising the Turkish flag and imposing Turkish IDs on the population, as well as the Turkish language, which is taught in schools and institutes under its control. The Turkish lira also has become the common currency.  

By Farouq Hamo