The World Today’s Tariq Ali speaks with Giran Ozcan, of the Kurdistan National Congress, about the current situation in Turkey. They discuss how the failure of Erdogan’s AK party to secure a majority at the last elections has led so some of the worst violence inflicted upon its own people for a long time.
The call below was issued by the Free Women’s Assembly. They also put together a factsheet about the blockades, which you will find below:
To Women’s Organizations;
Urgent Call for Action
Women’s Freedom Assembly (KÖM) is calling on your solidarity against the war and massacres that we have been living through for the past eight months. The AKP government and President Tayyip Erdoğan are repressing, through violence, all opposition forces who have been resisting the authoritarian regime that they have been trying to establish in Turkey and destroying all channels of political struggle. They have brought the Parliament to disfunction and suspended the rule of law by taking the judiciary system under their control. Continue reading
The Free Women’s Congress (KJA) has released the report below about the impact of the current war against Kurds on the peace process. Also available here are two documents, one giving the names and details of some of the children who have been killed since July last year, and another that gives evidence of the deliberate targeting of Kurdish graveyards by security forces.
REPORT ON THE CONFLICT PROCESS, POLITICAL SITUATION, AND WOMEN IN KURDISTAN
FREE WOMEN’S CONGRESS / KJA
10 January 2016
Peace Negotiations Launched
The dialog and negotiations process for the resolution of the Kurdish Issue, launched at İmralı Island on January 2013, entered a new phase on February 28, 2015 following its announcement in the Dolmabahçe Palace before the press by a mixed delegation of HDP and AKP deputies. The Dolmabahçe Agreement, which pronounced a 10-article roadmap for the negotiations process, has enhanced the hope and commitment for peace among the peoples of Turkey, and Kurds in particular. Continue reading
The President of the Law Society, Jonathan Smithers, has written an official letter to the Justice Minister of Turkey, Kenan Ipek, with his concerns about the investigation into Tahir Elci’s assassination in November 2015.
The well-known human rights lawyer was shot dead in broad daylight, soon after having made a statement calling for an end to the curfews and state sanctioned violence in Kurdish cities at a press conference. The Law Society president raises concerns about lost evidence, witness statements and possible interferences in the investigations.
To read the letter download it here
A delegation of European lawyers will visit Diyarbakir from 21st to 24th January 2016. The 13 participants come from Belgium, Germany, Italy, and Austria. Two European lawyers’ organisations are supporting this initiative, the European Association of Lawyers for Democracy and Human Rights (ELDH) and the European Democratic Lawyers (EDL) and also the “Unione delle Camere Penali Italiane”
The appeal below, signed by 5 MEPs of the Kurdish Friendship Group in the European Parliament, was circulated on the weekend:
The crackdown against the Kurdish people must stop
Call of the EP-Kurdish Friendship Group
For a month now, the Turkish army has been running jointly with the special police forces an operation of unprecedented violence against the towns located in the Kurdish region of Turkey.
10,000 men supported by tanks and helicopters are mobilized for this offensive which virtually turned the country’s Southeast into a war zone.
This weekend Scottish Solidarity with Kurdistan held a demonstration in central Edinburgh to protest continuing attacks by the Turkish military on Kurdish cities and civilians.
The group delivered a letter to the Turkish Consul, which expresses concern for the women and children killed since last summer and calls for the Turkish government to end the curfews in Kurdish towns. The letter was signed by several other union members, Scottish Green party members and activists. Continue reading
We received this press release from our friends in Ottawa, Canada, who gathered today in Parliament Hill to protest the atrocities taking place in the Kurdish regions of Turkey:
To the Canadian Press and General Public:
The Kurdish Community will gather in Parliament Hill at 11:00 am on Monday January 18th, 2016 to demonstrate against the Turkish State atrocities in North Kurdistan (Turkey). Continue reading
Below is an excerpt from the latest information file published by the Kurdish Women’s Relations Office (REPAK. It details how women have been targeted by the Turkish state over the last several months.
You can download the full report here
‘Women of Resistance Targeted By the State’
Turkish State Terror in Kurdistan and Feminicide
As of 11 January 2016
I. ‘Fight against terrorism’ or state terror against the people? Political evaluation and call
II. Chronology: Curfews
III. ‘Shoot the women first!’ List of women killed during curfews or by extralegal execution
8 January 2016
Concerns about Abdullah Öcalan’s life: What is happening in Imrali Island Prison?
While Öcalan’s and Imrali Island’s total isolation continues since April 2015, now two inmates have been removed from the island and isolated elsewhere. This gives rise to the question: What is happening in Imrali? Is Öcalan’s life in danger?
The Imrali island prison is the Guantanamo of Europe. Over the 17 years of Öcalan’s imprisonment it has had an arbitrary and continuous aggravated isolation regime in place. Bringing in a few other prisoners in 2009 has not removed this regime–on the contrary: the number of persons subjected to an aggravated isolation regime has increased. This regime has only relaxed slightly while a political process was in place; when there is no process the isolation regime turns into total isolation with no news from prisoners, no lawyer-client consultations, family visits, letters or telephone calls for any prisoner in Imrali (Öcalan is denied the right to phone anyway). Continue reading