SYRIA: LGBT Anarchist Group Forms To Fight ISIS

The Independent reports:

A group of LGBT people fighting against Isis in Syria have formed their own military unit as the battle to eradicate the Islamist organisation continues. Isis has brutally persecuted LGBT people for several years and considers being gay to be a crime punishable by death.

Now a number of international volunteers fighting alongside Kurdish forces in northern Syria have formed an LGBT military unit and named it “The Queer Insurrection and Liberation Army” (TQILA) – pronounced “tequila”.

The group was set up under the umbrella of the International Revolutionary People’s Guerrilla Forces (IRPGF), an anarchist group taking part in the fight against Isis. TQILA’s formation was announced in a statement posted on its Twitter page.

More from Newsweek:

It remains unknown how many personnel will be involved in the unit, and how many are members of the LGBT community. Heval Rojhilat, spokesperson for TQILA, speaking to Newsweek, would not reveal numbers for security reasons. “Many of our comrades are within the LGBT*QI+ community,” Rojhilat says. “We are already fighting in Raqqa.”

The group was formed as its members had “watched in horror as fascist and extremist forces around the world have attacked the Queer community and murdered countless of our community members citing that they are ‘ill,’ ‘sick,’ and ‘unnatural.’”

The statement, using an Arabic acronym for ISIS, continues: “The images of gay men being thrown off roofs and stoned to death by Daesh was something we could not idly watch.” The statement ends with the slogan: “Shoot back! These faggots kill fascists!” The group’s logo is a black AK-47 machine gun on a pink background.