‘Martyrs are Immortal!” Kurds in Manchester Honour British Hero who Fought for the YPG.
Salute the Glorious Dead!
Hundreds of Kurds have honoured an ex-Royal Marine killed fighting Islamic State in Syria at Manchester Airport.
Konstandinos Erik Scurfield, 25, from Barnsley, South Yorkshire, is thought to be the first British person killed fighting IS extremists. He is said to have gone to Syria because he was “horrified by the atrocities being carried out” there. His body was flown into the airport as the Kurdistan Democratic Union party (PYD), has a large base in the city. A large crowd gathered in scenes reminiscent of those at Royal Wootton Bassett in Wiltshire, where hundreds of people regularly greeted the coffins of British service personnel killed in Afghanistan and Iraq. They had a chance to pay their respects as a private ambulance with his coffin was driven slowly past. His coffin was handed over to his father and uncle in a ceremony involving hundreds of Syrian Kurds on Saturday. BBC
Konstandinos Erik Scurfield: Mother proud of son who fought IS.
In her speech at Parliament, Mrs Scurfield said her son Konstandinos Erik “Kosta” Scurfield had left the Royal Marines to join Kurdish fighters.
“Kosta was not a mercenary,” she said. “He wasn’t an out-of-work soldier looking for an adventure or something to do to pass the time.”
She added: “Kosta was determined to make a difference and although this is not a way that many of us would have had him choose, it was the way he considered the best for him and I am proud of him for finding the courage to do this.”
Mrs Scurfield said her son wanted to oppose IS militants to protect the “fundamental rights of every human being”.
“In other words he was a humanitarian who, in his own words, wanted to help,” she said.
20 March 2015 KQ News Desk
Hundreds of people gathered today at Manchester Airport to welcome YPG fighter Konstandinos Erik Scurfield as his body arrived back in the UK.
Konstandinos Scurfield died in battle against ISIS gangs on March 2nd 2015 and became the first British People’s Protection Units (YPG) fighter to lose his life in Rojava-Western Kurdistan (Northern Syria).
People started gathering from 9am at Manchester Airport Cargo Terminal to wait for Konstandinos’ body as it arrived from Istanbul. Carrying photos of Mr. Scurfield and waving YPG, Kurdish and Abdullah Ocalan flags people shouted, “Who is the symbol of humanity, resistance and fraternity? – Kosta!”
Before the arrival of the coffin, the message of Konstandinos’ mother Vasiliki Scurfield was read out. The message said:
We are sorry that no-one from our family can be with you today when Kosta lands in Manchester. We feel that we need to regroup and take some time together as a family to focus on the coming preparations. We are grateful and honoured by the continued support of our friends from the Kurdish community both in the UK as well as Kurdistan and we will continue to keep you informed of funeral plans as they formed.
Konstandinos’ body arrived amongst the mourners at 11:30am as they swelled to over 300 people and was greeted with a shower of hundreds of flowers, flags and pictures of the fighter. There were scenes of unprecedented outpourings of grief and lament as people surged forward to show their feelings. Many people were crying as the Kurdish national anthem was sung followed by a minutes silence and then songs of resistance and revolution.
The van carrying Mr. Scurfield’s body was followed with cries of, “Martyrs are immortal.” It is expected that following an autopsy a funeral ceremony will be held in Nottingham the following week.