KURDISH NEWS WEEKLY BRIEFING, 8 – 14 OCTOBER 2016

NEWS

1. Hundreds of Syrian rebels join the pro-Kurdish SDF alliance14 October
2. 
Over 2,500 Arabs displaced by ISIS, hosted by Kurds in Syria’s Afrin
3. Liberated from ISIS suppression, women of Manbij join security forces
4. Police raids HDP and DBP buildings in Amed
5. 
Dozens of Kurdish politicians detained in Van – UPDATE
6. Prosecutor objects to DBP co-chair’s release and demands his re-arrest
7. Med Nûçe TV officials discuss press freedom in the Council of Europe
8. Eutelsat stops the broadcast of Newroz TV as well
9. Campaign for missing Kurdish politician winds up with a rare happy ending
10. Destruction in Kurdish capital of south-east Turkey is dark mirror to Syria
11. Turkey’s Kurds are in the crosshairs as government crackdown widens
12. Amnesty: Yezidi survivors attempt suicide, world must act

 

OPINION, COMMENTARY, ANALYSIS
1. “The Stone Building” and the Post Coup Erdoğan Crackdown
2. İlham Ehmed: Turkey an obstacle in the liberation of Mosul – PART II
3. ISIS emir Abdullah: Turks are the MVPs of ISIS
4. A no-fly zone for Aleppo risks a war that could engulf us all
5. Why a No-Fly Zone Will Not Solve the Crisis in Aleppo
6. Turkey: EU Leaders Silent On AKP’s Crushing Of Democracy
7. Flückiger: Turkey en route to a fascist state, there must be an intervention
8. Russkies at the Doorstep

CAMPAIGNS, EVENTS
1. Ocalan Demo on 9 October
2. Turkey: Release The PKK’s Abdullah Ocalan Now
3. Jailed Kurdish leader released
Unite and Labour MP delighted
——————————————
NEWS
1. Hundreds of Syrian rebels join the pro-Kurdish SDF alliance14 October/ARA News
A Free Syrian Army (FSA) brigade joined the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) on Thursday. The SDF is an alliance of Kurdish, Arab, Assyrian and Armenian militias that have been fighting the Islamic State (ISIS) in northern Syria. In a press conference in Hasakah city, the Free Officers Union announced that they were deserting the FSA’s ranks and joining the SDF. Their representatives expressed a strong aversion to Islamism.
http://aranews.net/2016/10/hundreds-syrian-rebels-join-kurdish-arab-alliance-sdf/

2. Over 2,500 Arabs displaced by ISIS, hosted by Kurds in Syria’s Afrin
14 October/ARA News
The Kurdish city of Afrin has received thousands of displaced civilians from villages near al-Bab city in Syria’s northern Aleppo Governorate. More than 2,500 Arab civilians fled their villages after Islamic State (ISIS) militants ordered residents to evacuate. ISIS has struggled to retain its positions north of al-Bab, against a coalition of rebels backed by Turkey.
http://aranews.net/2016/10/over-2500-arabs-displaced-by-isis-from-al-bab-hosted-by-kurds-in-syrias-afrin/

3. Liberated from ISIS suppression, women of Manbij join security forces
13 October/ARA News
Zainab Ali was the first Arab woman to join the Asayish police in Syria’s northern Manbij city. Her unprecedented step is considered revolutionary in this conservative community. Ali says she joined the Asayish forces to fight local Arab traditions, which she believes would confine her to a single role: a wife kept indoors.
http://aranews.net/2016/10/liberated-isis-suppression-women-manbij-join-armed-forces-protect-city/

4. Police raids HDP and DBP buildings in Amed
13 October/ANF News
Police raided the HDP and DBP buildings in the city center and districts of Amed last night. During the raids, police seized documents, books and party reports including the report on the months-long clashes in Sur district. During their raid on the HDP and DBP buildings in Amed’s Lice district, police officers broke the buildings’ doors and seized documents and books.
http://anfenglish.com/kurdistan/police-raids-hdp-and-dbp-buildings-in-amed

5. Dozens of Kurdish politicians detained in Van – UPDATE
12 October/ANF News
AKP government has accelerated the political genocide operations against Kurdish politicians across North Kurdistan.As many as 49 people who include the co-chairs of Democratic Regions’ Party (DBP) and Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) branches in all the districts of Van province have been taken into custody during an extensive detention operation as part of which numerous houses and DBP/HDP offices have been raided and searched in detail.
http://anfenglish.com/kurdistan/dozens-of-kurdish-politicians-detained-in-van-update

6. Prosecutor objects to DBP co-chair’s release and demands his re-arrest
12 October/ANF News
Diyarbakır 5th High Criminal Court Prosecutor has filed an objection to the release of DBP (Democratic Regions’ Party) co-chair Kamuran Yüksek who had been detained in May and released during first hearing on October 7. Yüksek had been detained on May 10 and arrested on the 13rd on alleged charges of “membership to an armed terrorist organisation”. The statements he had made to the press in the main Kurdish city Amed were cited as an evidence within the scope of the investigation launched against him by Diyarbakır Public Prosecutor’s Office.
http://anfenglish.com/kurdistan/prosecutor-objects-to-dbp-co-chair-s-release-and-demands-his-re-arrest

7. Med Nûçe TV officials discuss press freedom in the Council of Europe
12 October/ANF News
Officials from Med Nûçe TV, which was closed recently due to AKP pressure, gave a presentation in the conference held in the Council of Europe titled “Press Freedom in Turkey” yesterday. Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) Group of the Unified European Left (UEL)Member HDP MP Ertuğrul Kürkçü gave the opening speech in the conference which higlighted AKP’s anti-press freedom practices and stated that France and Europe should not bow down to this.
http://anfenglish.com/freedom-of-the-press/med-nuce-tv-officials-discuss-press-freedom-in-the-council-of-europe

8. Eutelsat stops the broadcast of Newroz TV as well
11 October/ANF News
Following the recent coup on the opposition media by the fascist Turkish state and the plug being pulled in over 20 networks that were the voice of Kurds, Alevis and workers, French satellite company Eutelsat suspended the broadcast of Belgium based pro-Kurdish MED Nuçe TV last week.
http://anfenglish.com/freedom-of-the-press/eutelsat-stops-the-broadcast-of-newroz-tv-as-well

9. Campaign for missing Kurdish politician winds up with a rare happy ending
11 October/Al Monitor
On Oct. 7, the Firat news agency ran an unexpected story: Kurdish politician Hursit Kulter was holding a press conference in the Iraqi city of Kirkuk, months after he went missing in Turkey’s mainly Kurdish southeast. Even the Kulter family was bewildered as they had lost hope he would ever turn up alive. Activists had mounted a vocal and unrelenting campaign of pressure on Ankara to explain the young politician’s disappearance, which had fueled fears that Turkey was returning to the 1990s, when arbitrary detentions and extrajudicial killings were almost a daily occurrence at the height of the Kurdish conflict in the southeast.
http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2016/10/turkey-missing-kurdish-politician-hursit-kulter.html#ixzz4MuJDQJ4b

10. Destruction in Kurdish capital of south-east Turkey is dark mirror to Syria
10 October/The Independent
All day and all night, the big white trucks roar along the muddy road inside the black, volcanic walls of Diyarbakir. They enter the old city empty and leave piled high with rubble. When I walk down the same narrow road after dusk, two massive bright searchlights switch themselves on. Despite the glare, I can see a crumpled house, a smashed roof. And then a policeman in a flak jacket holding an AK-47 steps into the light. “You can go no further,” he says to me in Turkish, bored, tired. He’s given this order a thousand times to the Kurds.
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/destruction-in-kurdish-capital-of-south-east-turkey-is-dark-mirror-to-syria-a7354161.html

11. Turkey’s Kurds are in the crosshairs as government crackdown widens
10 October/The Washington Post
It was just after noon when police stormed the local television station and cut the feed as employees — stunned but defiant — looked on. “The truth cannot be silenced!” the reporters chanted as authorities charged through the studio. The channel, aligned with the Kurdish opposition, was one of dozens of outlets closed last week as Turkey expanded a crackdown that began after a coup attempt in July.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/turkeys-kurds-are-in-the-crosshairs-as-government-crackdown-widens/2016/10/09/6be368f8-8a82-11e6-8cdc-4fbb1973b506_story.html

12. Amnesty: Yezidi survivors attempt suicide, world must act
10 October/Kurdistan 24
Amnesty International reported on Monday that the international community had ignored Kurdish Yezidi (Ezidi) women and girls who had been sex slave victims of the Islamic State (IS). Amnesty stated the Kurdish Ezidi survivors need urgent care and support to recover from the horrific abuses they faced during captivity in the hands of IS. The organization warned that some Ezidi women have attempted to commit suicide.
http://www.kurdistan24.net/en/news/79d4c2aa-5a0e-4a4d-98a8-94abadf5ad6b/Amnesty–Yezidi-survivors-attempt-suicide–world-must-act

OPINION, COMMENTARY, ANALYSIS
1. “The Stone Building” and the Post Coup Erdoğan Crackdown
13 October/Counter Punch
This summer a colleague and friend Sevinç Türkkan asked me to help her with her translation of a work of fiction by the Turkish writer Aslı Erdoğan. The book’s title is The Stone Building—the stone building is a prison. In July and August Sevinç and I worked through her initial English translation (I can’t read Turkish and she only asked me to help with the English prose). But the more we worked, the more I became engrossed by what I was reading, a work of literature like nothing I had ever read.
http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/10/13/the-stone-building-and-the-post-coup-erdogan-crackdown/

2. İlham Ehmed: Turkey an obstacle in the liberation of Mosul – PART II
13 October/ANF English
Syrian Democratic Council (MSD) Co-chair İlham Ehmed said the map of which power wants what in Syria isn’t totally clear yet. Lately, Syria has started heading towards uncertainty. This uncertainty is widening the divide between the US and Russia. The relationship and the talks between the two powers on Syria have ended since. Meanwhile, the Syrian Baath regime started to advance in Aleppo and Homs. Turkey’s invasion of Jarablus also continues to expand.
http://anfenglish.com/features/ilham-ehmed-turkey-an-obstacle-in-the-liberation-of-mosul-part-ii

3. ISIS emir Abdullah: Turks are the MVPs of ISIS
13 October/ANF News
ISIS emir Ahmet Osman Abdullah, code name Ebu Omer Ceza, who surrendered to the YPG made striking confessions on Turkey-ISIS relations. ISIS emir Ahmet Osman Abdullah escaped from ISIS in 2015 and surrendered to the YPG and has been arrested for some 10 months. Ahmet Osman Abdullah spoke about why he joined ISIS, what he saw once he was there, the conflicts he experienced, the relationship between ISIS and the Turkish state and why he surrendered to the YPG.
http://anfenglish.com/kurdistan/isis-emir-abdullah-turks-are-the-mvps-of-isis

4. A no-fly zone for Aleppo risks a war that could engulf us all
12 October/The Guardian
Much was made in this week’s Commons debate on Syria of the need for ano-fly zone over Aleppo. Given that the Syrian government and the Russians have a monopoly of air power over the city, the idea of denting or deterring it might seem attractive. Hillary Clinton also advocated such a zone in Sunday’s presidential TV debate.
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/oct/12/no-fly-zone-aleppo-war-russia-syria

5. Why a No-Fly Zone Will Not Solve the Crisis in Aleppo
13 October/Counter Punch
The proposal put forward to shoot down Russian and Syrian aircraft over Eastern Aleppo in a bid to end the bombardment of this part of the city is wholly unrealistic. The West is not going to risk a war against a nuclear power and its Syrian ally in order to help the 250,000 to 275,000 civilians trapped there. To pretend anything else is empty bombast detached from the realities on the ground. The danger of such wild schemes is that they divert attention from more realistic plans to save the besieged from further suffering and death.
http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/10/13/why-a-no-fly-zone-will-not-solve-the-crisis-in-alepp/

6. Turkey: EU Leaders Silent On AKP’s Crushing Of Democracy
13 October/Morning Star
HAYATIN SESI, a Turkish nationwide TV station, was established nine years ago as the “voice of millions not millionaires” but is now being targeted in the Turkish government’s “anti-coup” witch-hunt alongside 22 other television and radio stations.
http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/a-cf62-Turkey-EU-leaders-silent-on-AKPs-crushing-of-democracy#.WADVM-nlIyE

7. Flückiger: Turkey en route to a fascist state, there must be an intervention
12 October/ANF News
Flückiger mentioned the July 15 military coup attempt and said Erdoğan turned the coup attempt into an advantage for himself and started implementing the changes he wanted in the country. Flückiger underlined that the State of Emergency declared after the coup attempt served Erdoğan’s demands completely and that with the State of Emergency practice, Erdoğan increased his pressure on the people and all institutions every day.
http://anfenglish.com/features/fluckiger-turkey-en-route-to-a-fascist-state-there-must-be-an-intervention

8. Russkies at the Doorstep
11 October/Counter Punch
In a year noted for crude political discourse, eagerly serialized in the mainstream media, the MSM are themselves bellowing anti-Russian rhetoric, conspiracy theory, and fear-mongering. Of the two “evil of two lessers” contenders, Trump is the one who regularly gets hammered, justifiably in the case of his anti-Muslim and other racist and sexist slurs, while Clinton gets a pass, even an A+, for her repeated verbal assaults on Russia and its president, even as she reeks of class hostility toward Trump supporters.
http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/10/11/russkies-at-the-doorstep/

CAMPAIGNS, EVENTS
1. Ocalan Demo on 9 October
Photographs from the demo
https://www.facebook.com/telgrafnewscom/?hc_ref=NEWSFEED

2. Turkey: Release The PKK’s Abdullah Ocalan Now
12 October/Morning Star
SUNDAY October 9 marked the 18th anniversary of the expulsion of Abdullah Ocalan from Syria where he had been for the best part of 20 years. In 1998 Turkey was sabre rattling and openly threatening Syria to expel Ocalan and renounce its support for the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). Tremendous political pressures were exerted on Damascus, which was beset by severe economic strains and the weakening of its relations with its traditional global ally Russia, which was deeply damaged politically and embroiled in its own destabilising financial crisis.
https://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/a-f69b-Turkey-Release-the-PKKs-Abdullah-Ocalan-now

3. Jailed Kurdish leader released Unite and Labour MP delighted
12 October/Unite Live
Unite the union and Labour front bench MP Kate Osamor were delighted to witness the release of jailed Kurdish political leader Kamuran Yüksek in Turkey on Saturday October 8.

Kamuran Yüksek was arrested two weeks after returning to Turkey from the UK after a meeting in the UK parliament hosted by Kate Osamor and organised and supported by Unite and the GMB union.

http://unitelive.org/unite-and-labour-mp-delighted-at-release-of-jailed-kurdish-party-leader/

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

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 International Secretary,  Simon Dubbins. UNITE International Director Bruce Kent, Gareth Peirce, Julie Christie, Noam Chomsky, John Berger, Edward Albee, Margaret Owen OBE, Prof Mary Davis, Dr Thomas Jeffrey Miley, Mark Thomas, Nick Hildyard, Stephen Smellie, Derek Wall, Melanie Gingell

 

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