“This prison had a history of torturing Kurdish and Iraqi civilians, and now these fighters that are displayed on the wall are fighting other dictators such as Erdogan in Rojava,” he said.
Lawrence added that he doesn't see himself as a photojournalist whose duty it is to be neutral and reports a conflict from two sides, but a portrait photographer who is making a cultural study of the Kurdish struggle and of historical resistance against genocide.
“I am here because it affects me personally.
I am not someone who can walk around and pretend to be a neutral journalist.”
“The fact is that Turkey is invading Syria and they [Kurdish fighters] are defending their homes.
I am not that neutral about that.
I feel very personal [feelings] about these people.”
Lawrence underlined that these fighters he portrayed earlier defeated the Islamic State in Tal Abyad and Serekaniye (Ras al-Ain in Arabic), saying, “They don’t need to be fighting again exactly the same brand of jihadists.”