We will not let them make war! Statement by REBAK

This statement was sent us by the Kurdish Women’s Relation Office (REPAK) based in Erbil:

Dear women,

As Kurdish Women’s Relation Office we want to inform you about current incidents in our country, which aim to push the whole people of Turkey and Kurdistan into a dirty war.

On 20 July, in the mostly Kurdish inhabited district Suruç on the border to Kobanê (Rojava – Northern Syria) as result of a suicide bombing 31 people lost their lives, nearly 100 got injured. Most of these people were students from all over Turkey and Northern Kurdistan, on their way to Kobane, where they wanted to build a library and a playground for children.

It is assumed that the suicide bomber acted by order of ISIL, whereby since now nobody has admitted responsibility for the attack. Continue reading

HDP calls for mass participation in march for Suruc victims

21 July 2015

CALL TO INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY FOR ISTANBUL RALLY ON 26 JULY 2015

Islamic State brutally attacked the internationalist youth group who met in Suruç on July 20. They had gone there to support the struggle for great humanity being waged in Kobani, and help rebuild the city.

As a result of this attack, 32 people were killed and over 100 people were injured. Although Islamic State has been held responsible for this attack, Turkey’s AKP Government, by resisting the taking of effective measures to prevent Islamic State and other reactionary forces, bears the real responsibility for these massacres of civilians. Continue reading

Chatham House releases new report on Syrian conflict’s impact on Kurdish politics

Chatham House, the prominent and influential think-tank, has released a report written by Robert Lowe and Cengiz Gunes about the impact of the Syrian war on Kurdish politics across the region.

The report is available to view online and download from the Chatham House website.

The Impact of the Syrian War on Kurdish Politics Across the Middle East 

Summary

  • The demise of state authority in Syria is creating an unprecedented opportunity for Syrian Kurds, who have acted with speed to organize themselves politically and militarily. Across the region, Kurds seem to sense that their moment has arrived.
  • In 2014–15, the battle for Kobane created a new Kurdish nationalist myth of heroism and liberation. Kobane will endure as a famous victory – regardless of the devastation caused – of huge symbolic value for Kurdish sentiment across the region.
  • However, Syrian Kurds do not on their own have the political or military power to determine the outcome of the conflict or their own future trajectory. Both will hinge on their relations with other sections of the Syrian opposition, as well as on the actions of regional powers. Continue reading

Clean up the city- First International Campaign for Reconstructing Kobanê

Find our more about reconstruction efforts at the Kobane Reconstruction platform website: Help Kobane

Kobanê needs to rebuild! The reconstruction cannot happen without removing the remnants of the war.

Removing the rubble can help build a new foundation for a new Kobanê and restart its recovery. Access to construction machinery and equipment can not only help Kobanê to remove the debris but can also be an important tool for follow-up projects after the cleanup.

No machinery means no clean up. No clean up means no reconstruction, no rehabilitation, no recovery, no healing for the community! The longer the city remains uncleared the higher the risks of injury and of communicable disease and illnesses.

The lengthier the reconstruction processes the less likely, or the longer it will take the refugees to return to Kobanê and the villages. This issue places significant strains on Kobanê and its capacity to have essential and skilled members of society return and participate in the reconstruction process. Continue reading

UK delegation hails HDP success in Parliament meeting

Report on a meeting held on 7 July 2015 at the House of Commons on “Witnessing HDP’s victory in Turkey: Election monitors report back” hosted by Kate Osamor MP.

 Article and photos by Yasemin Kazan.

The event was organised by Peace in Kurdistan Campaign and chaired by Melanie Sirinathsingh. The meeting was held to provide insight into the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party, the HDP’s democratic project and to evaluate the progress of the party, in addition to the implications of the HDP’s electoral success for the Turkish-Kurdish peace process. Continue reading

Videos of Ocalan Award event in Strathclyde now available

On 20 June Strathclyde University student association awarded Abdullah Ocalan honorary lifetime membership. To mark the occasion a panel discussion was organised in which PiK patron Stephen Smellie, renowned writer James Kelman, organiser and activist Roza Salih spoke about the relevance of Ocalan in the struggle for self-determination and called for his release. Reimar Heider (International Initiative) was in Glasgow to accept the award on Ocalan’s behalf. Continue reading

Rojava, Kurdish autonomy and peace-building efforts in Syria: Report from a roundtable discussion

Peace in Kurdistan Campaign and the Kurdistan National Congress (KNK) organised a wide ranging discussion of Rojava, Kurdish autonomy and the attempts to build peace in Syria on 30 June 2015. Held in the Houses of Parliament, the event was hosted by the independent cross-bench peer Lord Hylton. Lord Hylton has recently returned from Rojava and is the first member of the UK parliament to visit the self-declared autonomous Kurdish region of northern Syria. The meeting was well attended and included people from the region and surrounding countries, along with British people and others with varying levels of familiarity with the Kurds and some who had little background knowledge but had been inspired by the resistance of Kobane.   Continue reading

Kurdish autonomous region of Rojava and peace-building efforts in Syria: A panel discussion held at the House of Commons

by YASEMIN KAZAN/LONDON

On 30 June, a round table discussion was held at the House of Commons focused on prospects for Kurdish autonomous region of Rojava and peace-building efforts in Syria.

The event was jointly organised by Peace in Kurdistan Campaign and Kurdistan National Congress and hosted by Lord Hylton. The debate was held to highlight what was happening in Kurdish autonomous region of Rojava and Syria and to present recent developments in the region and some of the key issues involved.

Dr Alan Semo, Lord Hylton and Margaret Owen

Dr Alan Semo, Lord Hylton and Margaret Owen

With ISIS capturing strategic towns in Iraq and the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP) winning 80 seats in the Turkish National Assembly for the first time, the discussion held at a particularly prescient time included; Lord Hylton, the first member of UK Parliament, Margaret Owen, patron of Peace in Kurdistan Campaign, Human Rights Barrister and Director of the International NGO, Dr. Alan Semo PYD UK, John Hunt, journalist, writer and editor, Michelle Allison, Kurdistan National Congress and some other attendees of journalists, independent diplomats, and human rights campaigners. Continue reading

PYD releases a public statement on military threat from Turkey

The Democratic Union Party  (PYD) release this statement yesterday responding to threats from the Turkish government about intervening militarily in Syria:

Public Statement

Dear Sir or Madam,

In the last few days, some officials of the Turkish government issued threatening statements, which resulted in the mobilisation of Turkish troops near the Syrian border. We, the Democratic Union Party (PYD), would like to clarify to our people and the international community our stance on this matter. Continue reading

PYD condemns deadly ISIS massacre in Kobane

The Executive Committee of the PYD has released this statement on the massacre in Kobane last week, the worst single atrocity committed by ISIS in Syria since the conflict began.

Statement of the Executive Committee of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) to the Syrian and International Public Opinion: Kobane massacre, a moral test for all humanitarian organisations.

The despicable and cowardly massacre in Kobane against unarmed civilians committed by ISIS, is a blatant crime against humanity and challenges the conscience of the world and all relevant human rights organizations. The world needs to stand on the side of the people’s protection units, YPG, and the women’s protection units, YPG, together with fighters from Burkan al Firat, who have bravely fought the barbaric ISIS gangs and their masters in Ankara.

Continue reading

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