KURDISH NEWS WEEKLY BRIEFING, 19 – 25 March 2016

 

KURDISH NEWS WEEKLY BRIEFING, 19 – 25 March 2016

NEWS

  1. Inclusive Involvement of Kurds in Talks on Syrian Future Necessary
  2. While world focuses on Brussels bombings, Turkish terror state bombs Kurds in Iraq
  3. Turkey must stop targeting Syrian Kurds, shift focus to the war on ISIS: UK Foreign Affairs Committee
  4. Pro-Kurdish leader urges peace talks with Turkey, four soldiers killed
  5. Is corruption suspect’s US arrest bad news for Erdogan?
  6. The current situation of the HDP and the DBP: Construction and Defense –Interview with Besime Konca and Muharrem Erbey
  1. State Department: Independence of Kurds a Matter for ‘the Syrian People’
  2. Russia says Turkey hinders Kurds’ fight against Daesh
  3. RT report on plight of Turkish Kurds prompts Russia to appeal to UN
  4. Kurdish-Turkish War Escalates
  5. Isis is committing genocide. It is indefensible for Britain not to say so
  6. A new bomb attack hits this NATO capital, but all is not as it seems

 COMMENT, OPINION, ANALYSIS

  1. Why The Silence On Turkey’s Brutality Towards The Kurds?
  2. How the Kurds Will Save Syria
  3. Black holes in the UK Budget, Bombs in Brussels and the Massacre of Kurdish Civilians (E323)
  4. Repression in Turkey: Why International Solidarity with the Kurds Is Crucial (2/2)
  5. Zombie politics: Europe, Turkey and the disposable human 
  6. The EU’s Blank Check for Turkish Authoritarianism
  7. Turkish Experts Comment on E.U.-Turkey Deal
  8. EU-Turkey ŒAgreement¹ On Syrian Refugees: An Illegal And Shameful Deal
  9. Ex-UN Asst. Sec-Gen: Turkey’s military slaughter of Kurds is a return to autocracy
  10. The Kurds’ Push for Self-Rule in Syria
  11. The Threat and Opportunity of Kurds in Syria

REPORTS

  1. House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee – publications and records
    Report: The UK’s role in the war against ISIL following the Cessation of Hostilities in Syria in February 2016 
  2. The aimless hitchhiker (part 2)

STATEMENTS

  1. Brussels Terror attacks are not only against the people of Belgium, but against all humanity!
  2. The Turkish State is Continuing its Massacre of Kurds and destruction of TownsACTION
  1. Avaaz is collecting a million signatures to a petition to include the Kurds at the Geneva peace conference.
  2. RT’s #JusticeForKurds petition garners 10k signatures in matter of days

 

NEWS

  1. UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura said that it s necessary to involve Syrian Kurds in the intra-Syrian-talks.

24 March 2016 / Sputnik News

GENEVA (Sputnik) – It is necessary that the Syrian Kurds are involved in talks on Syria’s future, UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura said Thursday,

http://sputniknews.com/middleeast/20160324/1036922206/syria-kurds-mistura.html

 

  1. While world focuses on Brussels bombings, Turkish terror state bombs Kurds in Iraq

23 March 2016 / Signs Of The Times

Turkish military said it launched airstrikes on PKK militants in northern Iraq on Tuesday , Reuters said. At least 13 Turkish fighter jets reportedly took part in the operation. The army hit shelters, caves and ammunition depots used by PKK fighters in northern Iraq and in areas near the town of Semdinli, in the Hakkari province of southeast Turkey, the statement from the Turkish military said. Turkey believes the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) is a terrorist organization, and Ankara has blamed the Kurdish separatist group for a number of recent terrorist attacks in the country. The Turkish military has repeatedly hit PKK targets in northern Iraq in recent months.

http://www.sott.net/article/315077-Turkish-fighter-jets-bomb-Kurdistan-Workers-Party-targets-in-Northern-Iraq

 

  1. Turkey must stop targeting Syrian Kurds, shift focus to the war on ISIS: UK Foreign Affairs Committee

25 March 2016 / ARA News

The United Kingdom must press Turkey to refrain from taking any further action against Kurdish YPG forces in Syria, and play a constructive role in the fight against the Islamic State (ISIS), said the House of Commons Foreign Affairs committee in a report on Thursday.

http://aranews.net/2016/03/turkey-must-stop-targeting-syrian-kurds-shift-focus-war-isis-uk-foreign-affairs-committee/

 

  1. Pro-Kurdish leader urges peace talks with Turkey, four soldiers killed

21 March 2016 / Reuters & Yahoo News

DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (Reuters) – Turkey’s Kurds on Monday marked the annual spring festival of Newroz with a call for the resumption of peace talks between the government and Kurdish militants, but four Turkish soldiers were killed in another rebel attack in the restive southeast region.

http://news.yahoo.com/kurds-gather-festival-southeast-turkey-under-tight-security-100953782.html

 

  1. Is corruption suspect’s US arrest bad news for Erdogan?

23 March 2016 / Almonitor

The March 19 arrest of Iranian-Turkish gold trader Reza Zarrab in Florida came as a bombshell to Ankara politics. Zarrab allegedly was the key figure running a money-transfer network in 2010-2015 that was designed to evade US sanctions against Iran.

http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2016/03/turkey-iran-usa-arrest-of-zarrab-bad-news-for-erdogan.html#ixzz43s0jhTrO

 

  1. The current situation of the HDP and the DBP: Construction and Defense

Interview with Besime Konca and Muharrem Erbey

24 March 2016 / Peace In Kurdistan

Interview with Besime Konca, the representative of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) and of the Democratic Regions Party (DBP) within the HDP, and Muharrem Erbey, the HDP-representative of Amed (Diyarbakur) and a long-standing former chairman of the human rights group IHD. The interview was made possible on the occasion of their visit to Berlin on December 19th, 2015.

https://peaceinkurdistancampaign.com/2016/03/24/interview-with-muharram-erbey/

  1. State Department: Independence of Kurds a Matter for ‘the Syrian People’

21 March 2016 / Breitbart

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The ultimate decision of whether or not Kurds should be allowed to establish their own region in northern Syria lies with the Syrian people, according to the U.S. Department of State (DOS).

While the Obama administration maintained that it will not recognize a Kurdish de-facto federal zone in Syria, it also said that the Syrian people should decide the fate of such a move.

http://www.breitbart.com/national-security/2016/03/21/state-syrians-should-decide-fate-of-kurdish-autonomous-zone/

 

  1. Russia says Turkey hinders Kurds’ fight against Daesh

23 March 2016 / Press TV

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov slammed Turkey Wednesday for attacking positions of Kurdish fighters, saying Ankara is “frustrating” efforts made to fight the Daesh Takfiri terrorists.

“When the Kurds try and take back territory from Islamic State (Daesh) the Turkish side starts artillery strikes on the Kurdish positions frustrating their attempts to fight the terrorist organization,” Lavrov said in a joint press conference with his German counterpart, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, in the Russian capital, Moscow.

http://www.presstv.ir/Detail/2016/03/23/457228/Russia-Turkey-Lavrov-Syria-Kurds-YPG

 

  1. RT report on plight of Turkish Kurds prompts Russia to appeal to UN

23 March 2016 / RT

After looking into RT’s report on alleged massive human rights violations committed by the Turkish army during a crackdown on Kurds, the Russian Foreign Ministry addressed the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights’ office, asking for it to investigate.

https://www.rt.com/news/336950-rt-kurds-russia-un/

 

  1. Kurdish-Turkish War Escalates

21 March 2016 / Lobelog

On March 15, Duran Kalkan, one of the main leaders of the PKK, stated that March would be a Kurdish Spring, at least for the Kurds in Turkey. Kalkan announced that the PKK would extend its war against Ankara to all of western Turkey, including the major cities of Istanbul, Ankara, and Izmir. Terrorist attacks would also likely take place along the tourist-favored Mediterranean coast.

http://lobelog.com/kurdish-turkish-war-escalates/#

 

  1. Isis is committing genocide. It is indefensible for Britain not to say so

21 March 2016 / The Guardian

The word genocide should never be invoked too readily. For most the term will be forever associated with the atrocities of Nazi concentration camps and the deliberate effort to exterminate Jews. The horrors were so unspeakable that the language to describe that carefully orchestrated attempt at annihilation has to remain undiluted.

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/mar/21/isis-genocide-britain-yazidis

 

  1. A new bomb attack hits this NATO capital, but all is not as it seems

19 March 2016 / The Canary

Turkey has the second biggest army in NATO, and has used it to launch a vicious offensive against Kurdish citizens over the last eight months. But NATO, the EU, and the western media have largely failed to condemn the Turkish regime for its crimes.

http://www.thecanary.co/2016/03/19/new-bomb-attack-hits-nato-capital-not-seems/

 

COMMENT, OPINION, ANALYSIS

  1. Why The Silence On Turkey’s Brutality Towards The Kurds?

24 March 2016 / Morning Star Online

APPROACHING the outskirts of Diyarbakir from the gleaming local airport, the unwary visitor could be forgiven for thinking that the dozens of freshly built blocks of flats were evidence of a successful city striving to accommodate its 1.6 million inhabitants.

http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/a-6b0a-Why-the-silence-on-Turkeys-brutality-towards-the-Kurds#.VvU2BmSLTZt


  1. How the Kurds Will Save Syria

24 March 2016 / Alternet

As the Russian aircraft began their partial withdrawal from Syria, the Syrian Kurds declared their ambitions for what they call Rojava. Given the deeply fragmented nature of Syria during this five-year war, the Syrian Kurds suggested that the country adopt federalism as its organizational principle. Syria’s partition was off the table, as was the re-creation of a strong central government. Instead, the Syrian Kurds proposed that a unity of relatively autonomous states within Syria would be the model. The Kurds, it was said, have shown in practice what might be part of the post-conflict agreement. http://www.alternet.org/world/how-kurds-will-save-syria

 

  1. Black holes in the UK Budget, Bombs in Brussels and the Massacre of Kurdish Civilians (E323)

23 March 2016 / RT

Jeremy Corbyn’s shadow Treasury Minister calls for Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer to resign. Muharrem Erbey, a human rights lawyer and Michelle Allison, Women’s Representative of the Kurdish National Congress talk about how Turkey is threatening the very existence of the European Union. Plus Afshin is joined once again by the former News Editor of News of the World and owner of Clear Vista media, Neville Thurlbeck to go through the week’s news.

https://www.rt.com/shows/going-underground/336932-uk-budget-bombs-massacre/

 

  1. Repression in Turkey: Why International Solidarity with the Kurds Is Crucial (2/2)

21 March 2016 / The Real News

To hear E&B News’ interview with Ilan Pappé, ‘What Chance for Peace in Palestine?’, go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hI63UQUCLho

http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=15903

 

  1. Zombie politics: Europe, Turkey and the disposable human

19 March 2016 / Open Democracy

Who will think of the EU as a global actor with normative power, now that it finds itself in the role of rubberstamping and in fact facilitating Turkey’s slide into the abyss?

In his book Zombie Politics and Culture in the Age of Casino Capitalism the US American public intellectual Henry Giroux examines the emergence of the culture of sadism, cruelty, disposability, and death in America. His metaphor, the Zombie, is a pertinent one: dead but not quite, the Zombie does not make autonomous decisions but is driven by higher powers. He or she nevertheless wreaks considerable havoc, kills, terrorises and disposes of bodies with ease. The Zombie derives its power from the anxieties of the common man and woman.

https://www.opendemocracy.net/kerem-oktem/zombie-politics-europe-turkey-and-disposable-human

 

  1. The EU’s Blank Check for Turkish Authoritarianism

17 March 2016 / Middle East Institute

Turkey first applied for associate membership in the European Economic Community in 1959, and Europe has ever since had the upper hand in relations with Ankara. But the EU’s relationship with Turkey has been turned upside down by the Syrian refugee crisis, and the alarm it has caused in European countries.

http://www.mei.edu/content/article/eu’s-blank-check-turkish-authoritarianism

 

  1. Turkish Experts Comment on E.U.-Turkey Deal

21 March 2016 / Middle East Institute

The European Union and Turkey agreed March 17 on a plan to address the Syrian refugee crisis. Under the deal any migrants arriving in Europe, starting next week, will be sent back to Turkey. Ankara, in exchange, will receive expedited aid intended to help Syrians in Turkey, as well as the promise of reignited E.U. membership talks.

http://www.mei.edu/content/turkish-experts-comment-on-eu-turkey-deal

 

  1. EU-Turkey ŒAgreement¹ On Syrian Refugees: An Illegal And Shameful Deal

17 March 2016 / Social Europe

I used to enjoy researching European integration because the subject struck me as a rich laboratory for distilling evidence on the dark undersides of national governments. I have learned quite a bit about how the governments of my original and adopted countries (Turkey and the UK) defended the ‘national interest’ in Europe. My reading of the evidence suggested that ‘national interest’ was in reality nothing but that of veto points: small but tightly-organised interest groups able to capture public policy precisely because they are few in number and organise effectively. In contrast, the public at large (i.e., the legal and philosophical origin of the national interest) was sidelined owing to its inherent weakness in resolving collective action problems – as Mancur Olson has demonstrated.

https://www.socialeurope.eu/2016/03/eu-turkey-agreement-syrian-refugees-illegal-shameful-deal/

 

  1. Ex-UN Asst. Sec-Gen: Turkey’s military slaughter of Kurds is a return to autocracy

17 March 2016 / Sott & RT

The growing international outcry is sending Ankara a clear message to “reconsider” its military quest against the Kurds. It is causing immense civilian suffering and undermines regional security, former UN Assistant Secretary-General Hans Christof von Sponeck told RT.

http://www.sott.net/article/314717-Ex-UN-Asst-Sec-Gen-Turkeys-military-slaug

 

  1. The Kurds’ Push for Self-Rule in Syria

21 March 2016 / The New York Times

One important political outcome of the Syrian war could be a decision by Syrian Kurds to establish a semiautonomous region in the northern part of the country. The move entails risks and has been condemned by Turkey and even some Kurds, but could offer a model for decentralized governance in a federated Syria.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/22/opinion/the-kurds-push-for-self-rule-in-syria.html?_r=1

 

  1. The Threat and Opportunity of Kurds in Syria

22 March 2016 / Middle East Online

Syria grapples with finding a formula that would maintain the external boundaries of the state while renegotiating internal territorial divisions, citizen rights, and identities, notes Rami G. Khouri.

BEIRUT — The complex situation across all of Syria has become ever more challenging with the recent announcement by major Kurdish parties that they are moving ahead with a plan to unite several disconnected areas across all of northern Syria into a semi-autonomous area within a federal system. The idea has been widely rejected by most other Syrian parties, including the government and the mainstream opposition; and the Arab League has now weighed in with its own opposition to the move, claiming it would result in the partition of Syria.

http://www.middle-east-online.com/english/?id=75935

 

REPORTS

  1. House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee – publications and records

Report: The UK’s role in the war against ISIL following the Cessation of Hostilities in Syria in February 2016

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201516/cmselect/cmfaff/683/68302.htm

Turkey: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201516/cmselect/cmfaff/683/68306.htm#_idTextAnchor022

 

  1. The aimless hitchhiker (part 2)

16 March 2016 / An Aimless Hitchhiker

“All religions have the same heart. We’re all one,” a man says to us warmly as we drink tea in his home.

We are in the city of Kobanê in Rojava, an autonomous and democratically run region in the north of Syria. In late 2014, Kobanê became the focus of the world’s media when ISIS attacked the city and surrounding villages. In response, the US eventually bombed Kobanê, flattening it in the process. As they fought ISIS, the bravery of the Rojavan YPJ and YPG fighters was all over the news, whilst their brother and sister PKK guerillas within Turkey’s borders were, and still are, branded terrorists by Turkey and its allies.

https://anaimlesshitchhiker.wordpress.com/2016/03/15/travels-in-rojava-part-2-kobane/

 

STATEMENTS

  1. Brussels Terror attacks are not only against the people of Belgium, but against all humanity!

24 March 2016 / Kurdistan National Congress

Suicide bombers targeted the Capital of the EU and Belgium. As a result of these attacks 34 innocent civilians lost their lives and 250 people were injured. The so-called ‘Islamic State’ (IS) has claimed these vicious attacks. We condemn these attacks against humanity and all those that support them. We offer our condolences to the loved ones of all those who lost their lives and wish a speedy recovery to all those injured. These attacks were not only against the people of Belgium, but against all humanity. All those that want to defend the honour of humanity should stand shoulder to shoulder.

http://www.kongrakurdistan.net/en/brussels-terror-attacks-are-not-only-against-the-people-of-belgium-but-against-all-humanity/

 

  1. The Turkish State is Continuing its Massacre of Kurds and destruction of Towns

18 March 2016 / Kurdistan National Congress

The destruction of Kurdish towns by the Turkish state’s armed forces has been ongoing since August, 2015. To date, Cizre, Diyarbakır’s Sur, Silopi, İdil (Hezex), Dargeçit (Kerboran), Derik and Silvan have been largely destroyed and a total of 715 civilians, of whom 97 are children and 94 are women, have been massacred. In Cizre alone 105 civilians were burnt alive.

http://www.kongrakurdistan.net/en/the-turkish-state-is-continuing-its-massacre-of-kurds-and-destruction-of-towns/

 

ACTION

  1. Avaaz is collecting a million signatures to a petition to include the Kurds at the Geneva peace conference.

ONE MILLION SIGNATURE AGAINST THE EXCLUSION OF KURDS FROM GENEVA 3 CONFERENCE

One Million-Signature Campaign against the Exclusion of Kurds in the Third Geneva Peace Conference

We concerned individuals and human rights groups are launching a global signature campaign against the exclusion of Kurds in the third UN Geneva Conference. While we defend the cause of peace in Syria, we find the conference a blatant affront to the spirit of democracy and humanity that the United Nations fosters and supports…

https://community.avaaz.org/petitions/one-million-signature-against-the-exclusion-of-kurds-from-geneva-3-conference-1?source=facebook-share-button&time=1458476005

 

  1. RT’s #JusticeForKurds petition garners 10k signatures in matter of days

23 March 2016 / RT

RT’s petition calling for the UN to investigate human rights abuses by the Turkish military against Kurds in Turkey has gathered over 10,000 signatures. It is alleged that the government crackdown has seen innocent civilians killed en masse.

https://www.rt.com/news/336953-rt-petition-10k-signatures/

Peace in Kurdistan

Campaign for a political solution of the Kurdish Question

Email: estella24@tiscali.co.uk

http://www.peaceinkurdistancampaign.com

Contacts Estella Schmid 020 7586 5892 & Melanie Gingell – Tel: 020 7272 7890

Fax: 020 7263 0596

Patrons: Lord Rea, Lord Dholakia, Baroness Sarah Ludford, Jill Evans MEP, Jean Lambert MEP, Jeremy Corbyn MP, Hywel Williams MP, Kate Osamor MP, Elfyn Llwyd, Sinn Fein MLA Conor Murphy, John Austin, Christine Blower, NUT General Secretary, Bruce Kent, Gareth Peirce, Julie Christie, Noam Chomsky, John Berger, Edward Albee, Margaret Owen OBE, Prof Mary Davis, Mark Thomas, Nick Hildyard, Stephen Smellie, Derek Wall, Melanie Gingell

 

 

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