The Charter of the Social Contract is the provisional constitution of the autonomous region of Rojava. It was adopted on 29 January 2014, when the people of Rojava declared the three Rojavan cantons (Efrin, Kobane and Cizire) autonomous from the Syrian government.
In 17 March 2016 by 31 parties and 200 delegates representing Rojava’s Kobane, Afrin and Cizire cantons and the Kurdish, Arab, Assyrian, Syriac, Armenian, Turkmen and Chechen peoples of Girê Spî (Tal Abyad), Shaddadi, Aleppo and Shehba regions the Constituent Assembly for the establishment of the Rojava-Northern Syria Democratic Federal System has ended with the Final Declaration.
For actual political positions of the Democratic Self Administration of Rojava (DSA) look at their paper with the name Save Haven in Syria
TEV-DEM (Tevgera Civaka Demokratîk /Movement for a Democratic Society, Rojava/Northern Syria), the umbrella body of the administrations of Rojava, released an important document called The Project of a Democratic Syria, in which they lay out a proposal for the peaceful resolution of conflict Syria and a new political vision for the country as a whole.
A new book was published in March 2015 by Strangers in a Tangled Wilderness , entitled A Small Key Can Open A Large Door: The Rojava Revolution. The introduction to that book has been made available as an online zine and is an ideal one-stop-guide for people who want to know how the revolution in Rojava came about. It is available for download as a pdf.
Kurdistan National Congress (KNK) Information File, published May 2014: Canton Based Democratic Autonomy of Rojava: A Transformation Process From Dictatorship to Democracy.
The Democratic Autonomous Administration of Rojava released a peace proposal for ending the conflict in Syria in May 2014, called Kurdish initiative for a democratic Syria.
The founding document of the Democratic Autonomous Administration of Rojava, Charter of the Social Contract, Rojava Cantons, 29 January 2014.
Statement by the Kurdish Community Centre, Halkevi Turkish and Kurdish Community Centre, Sussex Kurdish Community Centre, Peace in Kurdistan Campaign & Campaign Against Criminalising Communities (CAMPACC), 14 February 2014: Peace, equality and self-determination: The Kurds take the lead in proposing a new way for Syria,
Norman Paech, Emeritus Professor of Human Rights and former foreign policy spokesman for Die Linke, breaks down Turkey’s hypocritical approach to Syria and it own Kurdish opposition movements in In the Glasshouse.
David Morgan’s articles for Live Encounters, The Mirage of ISIS and The struggle against ISIS in historical perspective are both excellent reviews of regional and global political dynamics following the rise of ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
Dilar Dirik, The ‘other’ Kurds fighting the Islamic State, published in Al Jazeera at the height of the Kobane resistance, asks why the ‘other’ Kurds of Syria (and their counterparts in Turkey) are still labeled as terrorists even while their superiority fighting ISIS became widely acknowledged.
Yvo Fitzherbert excellent reporting from the region shows how Ocalan’s ideas influenced the Rojava revolution and questions Turkey’s disruptive policies towards the Kurds. His later article, published in February 2015, delves into how Turkey’s unquestioning support for the Syrian opposition is effecting the Syrian refugees it is hosting.
VIDEO: BBC News documentary, Syria’s Secret Revolution, released in November 2014, goes behind the front line fighting in Kobane to look at the social revolution taking place across Rojava.
Delegations have visited Rojava in recent months to offer solidarity to the struggle, find out more about what is happening and raise awareness of the revolution back in Europe. Janet Biehl took part in one such delegation organised by Civaka Azad and wrote this report on her return, Impressions of Rojava: A report of the Revolution, as well as providing further and more detailed eye-witness accounts of democratic autonomy in action. The whole group also published a collective statement in which they report that genuine democratic structures have been built in Rojava, which they believe can show a new way forward for Syria and the Middle East.
For anyone questioning whether the revolution is Rojava is genuine, David Graeber, anthropologist and political activist who took part in the delegation, answered the question clearly on his return.
Dr. Jeff Miley and Johanna Riha summarise their observations from their visit to Rojava, and they discuss how democratic autonomy transcends state borders, integrate gender emancipation and has involved impressive mobilisation in all sections of society. Dr Miley also gave a talk at the University of Cambridge recently, titled, Can the revolution in Rojava succeed? which you can listen to below:
Peace in Kurdistan Campaign has also organised delegations to the region, and published several of the delegate’s reports once they returned.
Zaher Aarif travelled to North Kurdistan in November 2014 to find out more about the social revolution sweeping the region. He wrote about his visit for Anarkismo, where he describes how Kurdish institutions in the south of Turkey are operating autonomously in order to deal with the refugee crisis and continued attacks on the Kurdish people north and south of the border, just like in Rojava. Zaher notes that the social revolution taking place has come from local organisation of ordinary people on the ground.
Following the announcement on 26 January 2015 that Kobane had been liberated of ISIS troops, Trevor Rayne wrote that the Victory in Kobane was down to the will, determination, organisation and skill of the YPG and YPJ troops, and called for their affiliated organisation, the PKK, to be delisted.
Dilar Dirik explains why Kobane did not fall, and how the vision of the Kurdish movement led the resistance of Kobane to success.
Here is an article by Johannes de Jong in the Stream on the current state of Rojava, April 2016. A New , Free Middle East Is Rising from the Ashes of Syria’s Civil War. Why is Geneva Ignoring Them?