What’s In A Name?

On November 1, we posted a story that included mention of a man from Kobani on a hunger strike in Washington, DC.

When Moustafa Muhamed left Colorado to travel to Washington, DC, he did not realize the same man would never return. A native son of Kobani, he has also served as a Parliamentarian in Syria’s government in the past before moving to the United States. Starting with a mission to draw attention to the plight of his native city and the turmoil embroiling it, he began a hunger strike on October 20 in DuPont Circle and started a petition asking President Obama for 3 specific things.

During the 23 days of his hunger strike, he was joined by supporters, both Kurds and Americans, that believed in his cause and offered their solidarity in a variety of ways.

Yesterday, November 11,  the hunger strike was ended. As this native son of Kobani made his closing remarks, his remarkable transformation during this experience was revealed when he announced that he was changing his name and from here forward would be known as Azad Kobani. This Kurdish name translates to “Save Kobani.” While this was not the only important part of his message, it struck us with particular poignancy.

Occupy World Writes hopes there are more people in the world like Azad Kobani. We believe that when an experience changes or effects a person so profoundly that everything in life changes by the motivation of their human spirit being given to a cause for others, there is nothing more honorable. We also ask if there would be more understanding between cultures and peoples if more people were as willing as Azad Kobani to draw attention to the oppression of others.

The following is Azad Kobani’s closing remarks, presented first in his native Kurdish language, and followed with an English interpretation.

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