KURDISH NEWS WEEKLY BRIEFING, 29 JULY – 7 AUGUST 2017

NEWS
1. HDP MPs joining the Conscience and Justice Vigil in Van
2. Police attack the HDP MPs staging a march after vigil in Istanbul
3. HDP’s ‘Vigil of Conscience and Justice’ will continue in Istanbul
4. Victims of the Shengal genocide commemorated in Europe
5. Journalism Is Not A Crime In Turkey Or Anywhere
6. Turkish opposition shows solidarity with pro-Kurdish party
7. First Kurdish newspaper in Zazaki dialect is shut down
8. US-led Coalition: Iraqi Kurds put us in touch with Kurdish fighters in Kobani
9. Turkey reinforces military along Kurdish-controlled Syria border
10. ‘It’s memorycide’: Turkey dismantles monuments to Kurdish culture
11. Three Years On From The Yazidi Genocide
12. Heavy-handed police disrupt minute’s silence
13. Turkey to ban use of ‘Kurdistan’, ‘Kurdish city’ and ‘Armenian Genocide’ in parliament
14. Turkey’s opposition HDP to continue ‘justice watch’ in Istanbul
15. Joe Robinson: Terror charge ex-soldier ‘faces court wait’
16. Kurdish-led administration in Syria sets election dates
17. Turkey’s HDP spokesperson says he would vote ‘yes’ in Kurdistan Region referendum
18. Once against Kurdish initiative, Gülenists turned into sympathizers of Kurds

OPINION, COMMENTARY, ANALYSIS
1. Three Years After Islamic State Genocide, Yazidi Wounds Unhealed
2. Kurdish Autonomy: Possible Scenarios of Recognition of Syrian Kurds Independence
3. What next for Turkey’s opposition?
4. US special forces commander discusses support for Kurds in Iraq and Syria
5. Senior Kurdish official says Kurdistan independence referendum going ahead despite opposition
6. US pushes back on Turkish media claims about Syrian Kurds
7. IS THE MIDDLE EAST IN A WAR WITHOUT END UNLEASHED BY ISIS?

CAMPAIGN, ACTION
1. 30 July Kurdish Cultural Festival in Quorn – video by Telegraph Weekly
2. Petition for International Day Against Feminicide.

————————————
NEWS
1. HDP MPs joining the Conscience and Justice Vigil in Van
7 August/ANF News
HDP’s Conscience and Justice Vigil will start in Van tomorrow, after the demonstrations in Amed and Istanbul. The MPs to join the vigil have been announced.
https://anfenglish.com/news/hdp-mps-joining-the-conscience-and-justice-vigil-in-van-21400

2. Police attack the HDP MPs staging a march after vigil in Istanbul
6 August/ANF News
Turkish police staged a crackdown on the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) deputies that started a march after ending their one-week Justice and Conscience Vigil in Yoğurtçu Park Sunday evening.
https://anfenglish.com/news/police-attack-the-hdp-mps-staging-a-march-after-vigil-in-istanbul-21393

3. HDP’s ‘Vigil of Conscience and Justice’ will continue in Istanbul
31 July/ANF News
The first round of the ‘Vigil of Conscience and Justice’ led by the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) in Amed has ended. For days, the Turkish police were putting up barricades around the park where the activity was held, and evacuated even the whole surrounding streets and have blocked the roads during the statement given by the activists on the last day in Amed.
https://anfenglish.com/news/hdp-s-vigil-of-conscience-and-justice-will-continue-in-istanbul-21292

4. Victims of the Shengal genocide commemorated in Europe
4 August/ANF News
Victims of the Shengal genocide and the fighters who sacrificed their lives to protect the Êzidî people were commemorated in cities of Germany, Italy and France.
https://anfenglish.com/news/victims-of-shengal-genocide-commemorated-in-europe-21363

5. Journalism Is Not A Crime In Turkey Or Anywhere
5 August/Morning Star
JOURNALISTS in Turkey are some of the most courageous people I know. They work in conditions where they face daily threats and intimidation from the Turkish state and the constant fear of arrest.
http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/a-7e0c-Journalism-is-not-a-crime-in-Turkey-or-anywhere#.WYdh5enlIyE

6. Turkish opposition shows solidarity with pro-Kurdish party
3 August/Kurdistan 24
A delegation from Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party’s (CHP) visited pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) lawmakers Wednesday who are on a weeklong Istanbul demonstration against the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
http://www.kurdistan24.net/en/news/f5cbbcaf-7b0d-4867-b918-c407a6eb53d8

7. First Kurdish newspaper in Zazaki dialect is shut down
1 August?Kurdistan 24
The first newspaper to have ever been published fully in the Zazaki dialect of the Kurdish language in Turkey, Newepel, announced its closure Monday after over six years of low circulation.
http://www.kurdistan24.net/en/culture/2a23f523-9267-4670-9a85-9e5ed5c89180

8. US-led Coalition: Iraqi Kurds put us in touch with Kurdish fighters in Kobani
7 August/ARA News
The Iraqi Kurds have established a link between the US-led coalition and the Kurds in Syria, the US anti-ISIS coalition envoy Brett McGurk said, without specifying which specific Kurdish party, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) or the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) were behind the link up.
http://aranews.net/2017/08/us-led-coalition-iraqi-kurds-put-us-touch-kurdish-fighters-kobani/

9. Turkey reinforces military along Kurdish-controlled Syria border
5 August/Middle East Eye
Turkey has sent military reinforcements to its southern border with Syria, dispatching artillery and tanks to the area overnight, Dogan news agency said on Saturday.
http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/turkey-reinforces-military-along-kurdish-controlled-syria-border-1651323926

10. ‘It’s memorycide’: Turkey dismantles monuments to Kurdish culture
Locals in Diyarbakir say Turkey is trying to wipe out Kurdish heritage in its south-east, and with it political aspirations
http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/after-political-crackdown-turkey-targets-monuments-kurdish-history-and-culture-791128912

11. Three Years On From The Yazidi Genocide
3 August/Morning Star
TODAY marks the third anniversary of the genocide of thousands of Yazidis who were slaughtered by Isis jihadists in Iraq.The massacre of Mount Sinjar was officially recognised as a genocide by the UN last year and will be remembered today at events in towns and cities across the world, including London.
https://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/a-861b-Three-years-on-from-the-Yazidi-genocide

12. Heavy-handed police disrupt minute’s silence
4 August/Moring Star
KURDISH and Yazidi women refused to be silenced yesterday after police shut down a demonstration marking the third anniversary of the massacre at Mount Sinjar.
https://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/a-7c8b-Yazidi-protest-marks-2014-Isis-massacre#.WYSc99PythE

13. Turkey to ban use of ‘Kurdistan’, ‘Kurdish city’ and ‘Armenian Genocide’ in parliament
KURDISH and Yazidi women refused to be silenced yesterday after police shut down a demonstration marking the third anniversary of the massacre at Mount Sinjar.
http://www.kurdishquestion.com/article/3968-turkey-to-ban-use-of-039-kurdistan-039-039-kurdish-city-039-and-039-armenian-genocide-039-in-parliament

14. Turkey’s opposition HDP to continue ‘justice watch’ in Istanbul
7 August/Daily News
urkey’s opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) will continue its “Conscience and Justice Watch” in Istanbul after spending a week in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır. It is set to begin in Yoğurtçu Park in Istanbul’s Kadıköy on Aug. 1 and will continue for a week.
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkeys-opposition-hdp-to-continue-justice-watch-in-istanbul.aspx?pageID=238&nID=116156&NewsCatID=338

15. Joe Robinson: Terror charge ex-soldier ‘faces court wait’
2 August/BBC News
An ex-British soldier held in Turkey on a terror charge while on holiday may be imprisoned for three months before the case reaches court, his lawyer said. Joe Robinson, 24, who lives in Leeds, was with his fiancée Mira Rojkan and her mother when they were arrested in the coastal town of Didim.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-leeds-40804021

16. Kurdish-led administration in Syria sets election dates
29 July/Middle East Eye
The Kurdish-led administration in northern Syria has set dates for local council and regional assembly elections, an official said on Saturday, in an apparent move to consolidate its growing autonomy.
http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/kurdish-led-administration-syria-sets-election-dates-2085065097

17. Turkey’s HDP spokesperson says he would vote ‘yes’ in Kurdistan Region referendum
30 July/Kurdistan 24
A prominent member of Turkey’s Pro-Kurdish party on Saturday said he would vote “yes” in an upcoming referendum on the Kurdistan Region’s secession from Iraq if he had the right to vote.
http://www.kurdistan24.net/en/news/a3041883-5f1b-4f66-a7bb-0e4d667a6880

18. Once against Kurdish initiative, Gülenists turned into sympathizers of Kurds
7 August Daily News
If you want to attract the attention of Western public opinion through media about Turkey, there are some key words one should use.
If you use Kurds, Alevis, non-Muslim minorities, gender equality, extremists, radicals, salafists and are critical of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, you will certainly have an audience more willing to lend an ear to you.
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/once-against-kurdish-initiative-gulenists-turned-into-sympathizers-of-kurds.aspx?PageID=238&NID=116172&NewsCatID=412

OPINION, COMMENTARY, ANALYSIS
1. Three Years After Islamic State Genocide, Yazidi Wounds Unhealed
4 August/The Wire
 Iraq’s Yazidis marked three years since Islamic State launched what the UN said was a genocidal campaign against them on Thursday, but their ordeal is far from over despite the ouster of the jihadist fighters.
https://thewire.in/164630/three-years-since-islamic-state-attack-yazidi-wounds-still-open/

2. Kurdish Autonomy: Possible Scenarios of Recognition of Syrian Kurds Independence
1 August/Sputnik News
Kurdish autonomy in the north of Syria has every chance of gaining recognition under a number of scenarios, following the examples of South Ossetia or Kosovo, according to Syrian dissident Salah Eldin Bilal, the head of the Asbar Center for Research and Studies in Dusseldorf, Germany.
https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201708011056079176-syrian-kurdistan-independence/

3. What next for Turkey’s opposition?
31 July/Open Democracy
Kurdish autonomy in the north of Syria has every chance of gaining recognition under a number of scenarios, following the examples of South Ossetia or Kosovo, according to Syrian dissident Salah Eldin Bilal, the head of the Asbar Center for Research and Studies in Dusseldorf, Germany.
https://www.opendemocracy.net/north-africa-west-asia/djene-bajalan-michael-brooks/Justice-turkey-opposition-Erdogan-CHP-AKP-Kurdish-Berberoglu-Kilicdaroglu

4. Insights Into Turkish Domestic and International Politics (May-June 2017)
4 August/World View
Qatar finds itself isolated after the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt sever diplomatic ties. In contrast President Recep Tayyip Erdogan doubled down on support for the small gulf emirate, providing food supplies, Turkish troops and diplomatic support.
https://worldview.stratfor.com/article/insights-turkish-domestic-and-international-politics-may-june-2017

4. US special forces commander discusses support for Kurds in Iraq and Syria
24 July/ARA News
General Raymond Thomas, Commander of the U.S. Special Forces Command, said that the next flash point after Mosul is Kirkuk, arguing that Iraq will never accept the Kurds to take Kirkuk without a fight.
http://aranews.net/2017/07/us-special-forces-commander-discusses-support-kurds-iraq-syria/

5. Senior Kurdish official says Kurdistan independence referendum going ahead despite opposition
26 July/ARA News
Hemin Hawrami, senior assistant to Iraqi Kurdistan’s President Masoud Barzani, and a member of the Kurdistan Democratic Party’s (KDP) Leadership Council, said in an exclusive interview with ARA News that the upcoming independence referendum planned for the 25thof September “is not an opinion poll, but a binding referendum and will go ahead” despite opposition from the West.
http://aranews.net/2017/07/senior-kurdish-official-says-kurdistan-independence-referendum-going-ahead-despite-opposition/

6. US pushes back on Turkish media claims about Syrian Kurds
3 August/AlMonitor
The United States today broke its silence over the unremitting slew of accusations about its supposed plans to undermine Turkey through its armed support for Syrian Kurds fighting against the Islamic State (IS). The US Embassy in Ankara refuted the claims in a statement published on its website in English and in Turkish and shared via Twitter.
http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2017/08/kurds-syria-arms.html#ixzz4ovVOCLNC

7. IS THE MIDDLE EAST IN A WAR WITHOUT END UNLEASHED BY ISIS?
5 August/Newsweek
ISIS murders both other fundamentalist Sunni Muslims as well as Shia Muslims; Saudi Arabia is combating Iran; Turkey belatedly fights ISIS while attacking the Kurds. And the U.S. and Russia, their bombs raining down on Syria, have been sucked into this maelstrom, sometimes in uneasy alliance against ISIS, sometimes supporting their own factions in direct opposition to each other.
http://www.newsweek.com/middle-east-war-without-end-unleashed-isis-646296

CAMPAIGN, ACTION
1. 30 July Kurdish Cultural Festival in Quorn – video by Telegraph Weekly
https://youtu.be/Mw3O6hVlo98

2. Petition for International Day Against Feminicide.
https://peaceinkurdistancampaign.com/2017/08/07/petition-in-support-of-the-self-organisation-of-yezidi-women-and-for-a-day-against-feminicide/

Peace in Kurdistan
Campaign for a political solution of the Kurdish Question
Email: estella24@tiscali.co.uk <mailto: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,Julie Ward MEP,  Jeremy Corbyn MP, Hywel Williams MP, Kate Osamor MP, Elfyn Llwyd, Dafydd Iwan, Former President Plaid Cymru, Sinn Fein MLA Conor Murphy, John Austin, Christine Blower, NUT International Secretary,  Simon Dubbins, UNITE International Director, Doug Nicholls, General Secretary, General Federations of Trade Unions, Bruce Kent, Gareth Peirce, Julie Christie, Noam Chomsky, James Kelman, Margaret Owen OBE, Prof Mary Davis, Dr Thomas Jeffrey Miley, Mark Thomas, Nick Hildyard, Stephen Smellie, Derek Wall, Melanie Gingell, Steve Sweeney

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