KURDISH NEWS WEEKLY BRIEFING, 13 – 20 NOVEMBER 2017

NEWS
1. Gerry Adams: Ocalan should not be imprisoned
2. GUE/NGL Chair: An official delegation should visit Ocalan
3. BBC’s credibility at stake
4. “AKP wanted to use the KDP against Rojava and the PKK”
5.  One week of balance sheet in the Operation Cizire Storm
6.  Press conference on PKK ban in German Parliament
7. 704th appeal to visit Ocalan rejected
8. GUE/NGL Group Chair: Öcalan must be contacted
9. Indefinite sit-in by the CPT continues with resolve
10.  SDF: Turkish intelligence involved in the disappearance of Silo
11. Parliament: Kurds to withdraw from Iraqi political process uf calla for dialogue are ignored
12. The Kurdish Explosion Is Unleashing Demons

OPINION, COMMENTARY, ANALYSIS
1. Altun: Areas of freedom are created in the ME for the first time
2. Altun: Socialism cannot be built with the tools of capitalism
3. Turkey must avoid Iran impasse in Syria
4. Putin-Trump statement on Syria contradicts Erdogan’s calculations
5. Iran Turkey have own plans for Iraq’s strategic Sinjar
6. Syria’s Arab, Kurdish women join forces to fight for future
7. Rising oil prices add to Turkey’s economic woes
8. Academics, journalists who signed Peace Declaration do not deserve to live: ruling party deputy
9. Turkey’s Relations with the Middle East
10. NATO officer designating Erdogan as enemy Norwegian Kurd: Turkey media
11. Op-Ed: McGurk’s Kurdish Policy
12. Kurdish Pawn Sacrificed On The Middle East Chessboard – OpEd
13. Baghdad in secret talks to resolve crisis with Kurds, says Iraq MP

DELEGATION REPORT
Peace in Kurdistan Campaign: Absence of Evidence at Trial of Gultan Kisanak and Sebahat Tuncel

CAMPAIGN, ACTION
PETITION to UN Special Envoy for Syria: No Exclusion of Democratic Federation of Northern Syria from Geneva Peace talks Peace in Kurdistan Campaign

EVENTS
1. Public Forum on 20 November: Belgium Court of Appeal sets an important precedent The PKK is ‘party to an armed conflict’ and so is not a ‘terrorist organisation’  – De-list the PKK
2. March for the Freedom of Ocalan 10 December
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NEWS
1. Gerry Adams: Ocalan should not be imprisoned
19 November/ANF News
Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams released a video message to support the international campaign for Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan.
https://anfenglish.com/news/gerry-adams-ocalan-should-not-be-imprisoned-23261

2. GUE/NGL Chair: An official delegation should visit Ocalan
16 November/ANF News
GUE/NGL Chair Gabi Zimmer said that an official delegation should visit Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan in Imrali and called for resumption of negotiations between Turkey and the PKK.
https://anfenglish.com/news/gue-ngl-chair-an-official-delegation-should-visit-ocalan-23221

3. BBC’s credibility at stake
19 November/ANF News
In a report relying on statements by terrorists and smugglers, BBC cast false charges on the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) that eliminated Islamic State (ISIS) and eradicated it from its capital and main base of operations in Syria.
https://anfenglish.com/news/bbc-s-credibility-at-stake-23257

4. “AKP wanted to use the KDP against Rojava and the PKK”
18 November/ANF News
Kurdish writer and researcher Hussain Jummo thinks the regional and international intervention that led to the defeat of Kirkuk was caused by the faulty thinking of Southern politics.
https://anfenglish.com/news/akp-wanted-to-use-the-kdp-against-rojava-and-the-pkk-23247

5.  One week of balance sheet in the Operation Cizire Storm
18 November/ANF News
Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) fighters advancing in the Operation Cizire Storm have cleared the Tanaq oil field and four significant villages of gangs.
https://anfenglish.com/news/one-week-of-balance-sheet-in-the-operation-cizire-storm-23249

6.  Press conference on PKK ban in German Parliament
17 November/ANF News
A press conference will be held in the Federal Parliament on Friday about the discussions on German police forces’ recent attacks on Kurdish demonstrations and the expansion of the PKK ban.
https://anfenglish.com/news/press-conference-on-pkk-ban-in-german-parliament-23227

7. 704th appeal to visit Ocalan rejected
15 November/ANF News
Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan’s lawyers; Newroz Uysal, Mazlum Dinc and Cengiz Yurekli released a statement saying that the Public Prosecutor’s Office in Bursa rejected their appeal to visit Ocalan. This is the 704th rejection since 27 July 2011.
https://anfenglish.com/news/704th-appeal-to-visit-ocalan-rejected-23203

8. GUE/NGL Group Chair: Öcalan must be contacted
EP GUE/NGL Group Chairperson Zimmer demands Kurdish People’s Leader Abdullah Öcalan be contacted and heard from.
https://anfenglish.com/news/gue-ngl-group-chair-Oecalan-must-be-contacted-23201

9. Indefinite sit-in by the CPT continues with resolve
16 November/ANF News
The 24th day in the sit-in held in front of the CPT and the Council of Europe with the demand that Kurdish People’s Leader Abdullah Öcalan be visited at once has concluded. Support from CoE members continues.
https://anfenglish.com/news/indefinite-sit-in-by-the-cpt-continues-with-resolve-23212

10.  SDF: Turkish intelligence involved in the disappearance of Silo
16 November/ANF News
SDF General Command remarked that SDF Spokesperson Talal Silo was threatened by the Turkish state several times before, and that Turkish intelligence is involved in his disappearance.
https://anfenglish.com/rojava/sdf-turkish-intelligence-involved-in-the-disappearance-of-silo-23225

11. Parliament: Kurds to withdraw from Iraqi political process uf calla for dialogue are ignored
15 November/Kurdistan 24
The Kurdistan Region Parliament asked the Iraqi Prime Minister on Wednesday to stop using the language of threat and making unilateral decisions about the Region. Kurdistan Parliament in a statement urged the Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to resume the process of dialogue and adhere to the Constitution and to talk to the KRG instead of the media.
http://www.kurdistan24.net/en/news/7322112c-b39a-4ae1-90a6-7bd5341a8d89

12. The Kurdish Explosion Is Unleashing Demons
16 November/Foreign Policy
As if the Middle East were not explosive enough, it is on the verge of yet another conflict that threatens further destruction and division in a region of vital geostrategic importance. The “Kurdish question,” which has bedeviled empires and superpowers for centuries, has returned as a dangerous flashpoint with potentially seismic implications.
http://foreignpolicy.com/2017/11/16/the-kurdish-explosion-is-unleashing-demons/

OPINION, COMMENTARY, ANALYSIS
1. Altun: Areas of freedom are created in the ME for the first time
12 November/ANF News
KCK’s Altun remarked that the Kurdish resistance and struggle has changed the course of the crisis in the Middle East, and described the developments in Rojava as a first in the Middle East.
https://anfenglish.com/features/altun-areas-of-freedom-are-created-in-the-me-for-the-first-time-23160

2. Altun: Socialism cannot be built with the tools of capitalism
13 November/ANF News
KCK’s Altun pointed out that most of the anti-system movements are turning a blind eye on the fact that they are living capitalism and imperialism in every aspect and are deceiving themselves with their ideologies and dogmas.
https://anfenglish.com/features/altun-socialism-cannot-be-built-with-the-tools-of-capitalism-23173
3. Turkey must avoid Iran impasse in Syria
17 November/Hurriyet Daily News
Turkish, Russian and Iranian leaders are set to meet in Sochi, Russia on Nov. 22 to review their positions regarding their cooperation in Syria. The meeting will be between three presidents, Tayyip Erdoğan, Vladimir Putin and Hassan Rouhani. The foreign ministers of the three countries are expected to meet a day before to work details out in preparation for a decision.
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/opinion/murat-yetkin/turkey-must-avoid-iran-impasse-in-syria-122558

4. Putin-Trump statement on Syria contradicts Erdogan’s calculations
15 November/Al Monitor
Erdogan expressed indignation about the US-Russia statement on the eve of his Nov. 14 meeting with Putin and said, “If there can be no military solution, then they should withdraw their soldiers. The world is not stupid. The central government killed nearly 1 million people. Turkey doesn’t have soldiers there. Let them withdraw their soldiers and look for political solutions. The US has five air bases in northern Syria. They are preparing one at Raqqa. They also have eight military bases — that makes 13. Russia has five bases. What about these facts?”
http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2017/11/turkey-syria-usa-russia-harmony-contradicts-erdogan-plans.html#ixzz4yz0qr8Bk

5. Iran Turkey have own plans for Iraq’s strategic Sinjar
15 November/Al Monitor
Erdogan expressed indignation  about the US-Russia statement on the eve of his Nov. 14 meeting with Putin and said, “If there can be no military solution, then they should withdraw their soldiers. The world is not stupid. The central government killed nearly 1 million people. Turkey doesn’t have soldiers there. Let them withdraw their soldiers and look for political solutions. The US has five air bases in northern Syria. They are preparing one at Raqqa. They also have eight military bases — that makes 13. Russia has five bases. What about these facts?”
http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2017/11/turkey-syria-usa-russia-harmony-contradicts-erdogan-plans.html#ixzz4yz0qr8Bk

6. Syria’s Arab, Kurdish women join forces to fight for future
6 November/Al Monitor
AIN ISSA, Syria — At just 21 years old, Zilan’s burdens are already heavy. She has a pair of violent ex-husbands and a daughter from each. But she said she has left all that behind in her home village near Raqqa , the recently liberated capital of the so-called Islamic State in Syria.
https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2017/11/syria-raqqa-fight-kurds-women-sdf-islamic-state.html#ixzz4yz1QaFSG

7. Rising oil prices add to Turkey’s economic woes
16 November/Al Monitor
Atop an inflation rate stuck at 11%, an urban unemployment rate above 13%, a current account deficit close to 5% of gross domestic product (GDP), a growing budget deficit  and a rapidly depreciating currency, Turkey is now being hit by an increase in global energy prices coupled with a rise in prices for metals and minerals
http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2017/11/turkey-rising-oil-prices-add-economic-woes.html#ixzz4yz1eqd6U

8. Academics, journalists who signed Peace Declaration do not deserve to live: ruling party deputy
15  November/Turkey Purge
Şahap Kavcıoğlu, a deputy from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party), said academics, journalists and politicians who signed a peace declaration in 2016 do not deserve to live, Gazete Duvar reported on Tuesday.
https://turkeypurge.com/academics-journalists-signed-peace-declaration-not-deserve-live-ruling-party-deputy

 9. Turkey’s Relations with the Middle East
New Book:
This volume examines contemporary political relations between Turkey and the Middle East. In the light of the Arab Uprisings of 2011, the Syria Crisis, the escalation of regional terrorism and the military coup attempt in Turkey, it illustrates the dramatic fluctuations in Turkish foreign policy towards key Middle Eastern countries, such
http://www.springer.com/gp/book/9783319598963

10. NATO officer designating Erdogan as enemy Norwegian Kurd: Turkey media
18 November/Kurdistan 24
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – The NATO officer from Norway who designated Turkey’s founder Kemal Ataturk and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as fictitious adversaries during a drill this week was Kurdish, claimed Turkish media.
http://www.kurdistan24.net/en/news/8fc9b0f9-810c-461e-b400-9158d32141c3

11. Op-Ed: McGurk’s Kurdish Policy
18 November/Rudaw
Normally one would write a column such as this about “America’s Kurdish Policy,” or “President Trump’s Kurdish strategy,” or “Washington’s approach towards the Kurds.” Based on this columnist’s recent discussions with officials in Washington, however, it seems much for fitting to write about “McGurk’s Kurdish Policy.”
http://www.rudaw.net/english/opinion/18112017

12. Kurdish Pawn Sacrificed On The Middle East Chessboard – OpEd
18 November/Eurasia Review
Polls, referendums and declarations of independence have become a 21st century fashion, but none can claim much success. South Sudan has been a hotbed of civil strife ever since it broke away from Sudan in 2011.
http://www.eurasiareview.com/18112017-kurdish-pawn-sacrificed-on-the-middle-east-chessboard-oped/

13. Baghdad in secret talks to resolve crisis with Kurds, says Iraq MP
16 November/Iraq Oil Report
Iraq’s government has been holding secret talks with leaders from the Kurdish region to resolve the crisis triggered by its independence referendum, a member of Iraq’s parliament said. Kamel Al Zaydi, an MP from the State of Law coalition, said prime minister Haider Al Abadi had “established a secret committee headed by instrumental political figures to negotiate with the Kurds on the referendum crisis”.
https://www.iraqoilreport.com/daily-brief/baghdad-secret-talks-resolve-crisis-kurds-says-iraq-mp-26644/

DELEGATION REPORT
Peace in Kurdistan Campaign: Absence of Evidence at Trial of Gultan Kisanak and Sebahat Tuncel
20 November/The Kurdistan Tribune
Peace in Kurdistan Campaign Report:
The sixth hearing in the trial of Gultan Kisanak, co-mayor of Dyarbakir, and Sebahat Tuncel, co-leader of the HDP-affiliated DBP, took place on 3 November. It was attended by freelance journalist and editor John Hunt, as a UK observer. The hearing was held in Malatya, 150 miles from Dyarbakir, and the two defendants appeared by video-link to Kandira maximum security prison, 620 miles away, where they’ve been held for a year on charges for which the state demands more than three hundred years imprisonment.
https://kurdistantribune.com/absence-of-evidence-at-trial-of-gultan-kisanak-and-sebahat-tuncel/

CAMPAIGN, ACTION
PETITION to UN Special Envoy for Syria: No Exclusion of Democratic Federation of Northern Syria from Geneva Peace talks Peace in Kurdistan Campaign
Sign the petition here: http://chn.ge/2zbAlxt <http://chn.ge/2zbAlxt>

EVENTS
1. Public Forum on 20 November: Belgium Court of Appeal sets an important precedent The PKK is ‘party to an armed conflict’ and so is not a ‘terrorist organisation’  – De-list the PKK
https://peaceinkurdistancampaign.com/2017/11/06/public-forum-the-pkk-is-not-a-terrorist-organisation-analysis-of-the-belgian-court-decision/
RSVP Centre for Kurdish Progress:
http://www.kurdishprogress.org/belgian_court_of_appeal_decision_on_the_pkk 

2. March for the Freedom of Ocalan 10 December
Abdullah Öcalan led the struggle for Kurdish liberation for more than 20 years until his capture in 1999. Despite his imprisonment, in solitary confinement on Imrali Island in Turkey for the last 19 years, through his revolutionary ideas for the resolution of the Kurdish question and the crisis in the Middle East Öcalan has inspired a new political movement, with millions of followers.
https://peaceinkurdistancampaign.com/2017/11/20/on-international-human-rights-day-join-us-in-the-march-for-the-freedom-of-ocalan/

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: John Austin, Christine Blower, NUT International Secretary, Prof Bill Bowring, Julie Christie, Noam Chomsky, Jeremy Corbyn MP, Prof Mary Davis, Lord Dholakia, Simon Dubbins, UNITE International Director,  Jill Evans MEP, Lindsey German, Convenor STWC, Melanie Gingell, Rahila Gupta, Nick Hildyard, Dafydd Iwan, Former President Plaid Cymru, James Kelman, Bruce Kent, Jean Lambert MEP, Elfyn Llwyd, Mike Mansfield QC, Doug Nicholls, General Secretary, GFTU, Dr. Jessica Ayesha Northey, International Coordinator, Green Party of England and Wales;; Sinn Fein MLA Conor Murphy, Dr Thomas Jeffrey Miley, Kate Osamor MP, Margaret Owen OBE, Gareth Peirce, Maxine Peake, Lord Rea, Joe Ryan, Stephen Smellie, Dr Tove Skutnabb-Kangas, Dr Tom Wakeford, Dr Derek Wall, Julie Ward MEP, Hywel Williams MP.

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