EDMs

EARLY DAY MOTIONS (EDMs) are motions submitted by MP’s for debate in the House of Commons, and are a useful means of building support from MP’s for campaigns. By signing an EDM, an individual MP publicly declares support for the issue at hand, and with enough signatures, the motion could be debated in parliament. Below you’ll find recently tabled EDMs and information on how to encourage your MP to sign.

7 December 2015

EDM 826: CURFEW ON THE CITY OF SILVAN

Session: 2015-16
Date tabled: 07.12.2015
Primary sponsor: Lucas, Caroline
Sponsors: Williams, Hywel; Day, Martyn; McNally, John; Cunningham, Jim; Blackford, Ian

That this House expresses deep concern over the curfew placed on the Kurdish city of Silvan in Turkey, where Turkish security forces have launched major bombardments that have led to the deaths of around a dozen civilians and left the city without access to food, water and medical supplies; notes that this is the sixth such curfew to be placed on the town since the summer; further notes that such crude operations creates only further chaos and division by imposing collective punishment on populations of whole cities; notes that this is one of several towns that has been subjected to military attacks since July and it is reported that around 400 civilians have been killed as a result; and notes that the Government should use all its influence to encourage a ceasefire and the return to the peace process in Turkey, which will have important ramifications for the rest of the region.

WRITE TO YOUR MP!
To find out who your MP is you can visit the website: www.writetothem.com and enter your postcode. The site brings up your MP along with your other elected representatives and you can also email your MP directly from this site. Here is a Model letter (doc) that you can use as a guide of what to write.

Or better yet, why not visit your MP and talk to them about it in person? All MPs have either drop-in session or appointments at their constituency office once a week where they meet with their constituents, and you can find out how to arrange a meeting by going to your MP’s website.

4 December 2015

A new EDM has been tabled on freedom on expression in Turkey. The full motion is below and expresses alarm at the many arrests of journalists in recent months as well as the murder of human rights defender, Tahir Elci.

EDM 821: FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION IN  TURKEY

Session: 2015-16
Date tabled: 04.12.2015
Primary sponsor: Clwyd, Ann
Sponsors: Durkan, Mark; Brake, Tom; Day, Martyn; Meale, Alan; Ritchie, Margaret

That this House is deeply concerned by the risks faced by those attempting to exercise their right to freedom of opinion and expression in Turkey, including in connection with legal proceedings initiated against journalists and others accused of criticising Government officials; notes in this connection that Turkey is ranked 149th out of 180 countries in the Reporters Without Borders Press Freedom Index 2015; is alarmed that a court in Istanbul recently charged two journalists, Can Dündar and Erdem Gül, from the Cumhuriyet newspaper with spying, after they published information purporting to show the Turkish intelligence agency helping to send weapons to Islamist groups in Syria; is shocked by the murder of eminent human rights lawyer Tahir Elci, caught in a gun battle between police and unidentified gunmen on 28 November 2015, after a press conference in which he had made an appeal for peace between Turkish security forces and Kurdish rebels; further notes that he had previously experienced intimidation and harassment and at the time of his death faced criminal charges for expressing his opinion; calls on the Turkish authorities to free Can Dündar and Erdem Gül, and to conduct a full and transparent investigation into Tahir Elci’s murder; and urges the Government to raise these issues as a matter of urgency with the Turkish government, while continuing to work with Turkish authorities to address the pressing needs of Syrian refugees.

WRITE TO YOUR MP!
To find out who your MP is you can visit the website: www.writetothem.com and enter your postcode. The site brings up your MP along with your other elected representatives and you can also email your MP directly from this site. Here is a Model letter (doc) that you can use as a guide of what to write.

Or better yet, why not visit your MP and talk to them about it in person? All MPs have either drop-in session or appointments at their constituency office once a week where they meet with their constituents, and you can find out how to arrange a meeting by going to your MP’s website.

21 May 2013

EDM 151: Turkey, Peace Talks and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) calls on Parliament to acknowledge that the ongoing peace talks between the Turkish government and Kurdish leader, Abdullah Ocalan, offer the best prospect for a peaceful and political resolution to the conflict, and also call on the government to revise its counter terrorism strategy and proscription of the PKK in order to remove one obstacle in the negotiation process.

It is important to continue to pressure the UK government to acknowledge that by keeping the PKK on the terrorism list, they are blocking the possibility of the two sides of this conflict negotiating as equal partners. This EDM is one way of doing that.

EDM 151: TURKEY, PEACE TALKS AND THE KURDISTAN WORKERS’ PARTY (PKK)

Session: 2013-14
Date tabled: 21 May 2013
Primary Sponsor: Jeremy Corbyn MP

That this House welcomes the start of direct talks between the Turkish government and the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Ocalan as offering the prospect of a peaceful political resolution of the Kurdish conflict that has raged on for nearly 30 years; acknowledges that the withdrawal of units of Kurdish PKK guerrillas from Turkish territory is a significant step towards a permanent cessation of hostilities and an important gesture of goodwill on the part of the Kurdish side; and calls on the Government to seek a review of anti-terrorism legislation and the proscription of the PKK in order to remove an obstacle that stands in the way of finding a negotiated settlement between the two parties of the conflict.

 

27 February 2013

EDM 1128: TURKEY AND KURDS – PEACE TALKS

Session: 2012-13
Date tabled: 27 February 2013
Primary sponsor: Jeremy Corbyn MP

That this House acknowledges the positive steps that have been taken by the Turkish government and Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) Leader Abdullah Öcalan to resume peace talks; remains hopeful, despite vested interests intent on derailing the talks as appears evident in the appalling killing of the three Kurdish women activists in Paris on 10 January 2013, that the renewal of talks along with genuine will from both sides will lead to a lasting and democratic resolution, not only to the armed conflict but to the lingering issues of cultural, linguistic and political rights for Kurdish citizens of Turkey; further acknowledges that a peaceful resolution must come from a genuine and negotiated settlement that includes the voices of all partners as equals, including Abdullah Öcalan, the PKK leadership and the Peace and Democracy Party; notes that the continued detention of leading Kurdish politician Adem Uzun in Paris, who played a key role in the Oslo peace talks, is meaningless and counterproductive at this time; and calls on the Government to urge the French authorities to release immediately Adem Uzun from custody.

25 October 2012

EDM 628: KURDISH HUNGER STRIKES

Session: 2012-13
Date tabled: 25 October 2012
Primary sponsor: Jeremy Corbyn MP

That this House notes that on 25 October 2012 the Kurdish hunger strike in Turkey reached its 43rd day; further notes that 63 Kurdish political prisoners have been on hunger strike for the whole of this time and have now been joined by several hundred more; observes that the demands of the strikers include the release of Abdula Ocalan in order to negotiate a political settlement of the Kurdish question in Turkey and that Kurdish language rights in the public sphere be recognised; further notes that a letter has been sent to the Prime Minister on behalf of the Kurdish Federation of the UK asking the Government to do everything in its power to apply political pressure on the Turkish government to solve the Kurdish question; further notes that the Turkish Minister of Justice is reported to have met some of the hunger strikers and hopes that this significant move is a step towards meeting the fundamental rights of Kurdish people by the Turkish government; and calls on the Government to do all it can to support the rights of Kurdish people in Turkey.

26 June 2012

EDM 261: PROSECUTION AND ARREST OF KURDISH POLITICIANS

Session: 2012-13
Date tabled: 26.6.12
Primary sponsor: Hywel Williams MP

That this House notes with profound concern the escalating prosecutions of elected Kurdish politicians in Turkey, the recent heavy sentences of 10 and 14 years passed on Leyla Zana and Aysel Tugluk, as well as the latest wave of arrrests in Van District, which includes two mayors from the Peace and Democracy Party; expresses alarm that these arrests and detentions are part of the continuing Kurdistan Communities Union investigations which amount to an attempt by the Turkish government to eradicate the Kurds as an effective political force; is gravely concerned that the state detention facilities to which parliamentarians and other prisoners are sent are overcrowded, in poor condition and are the object of repeated allegations of human rights violations and prisoner abuse; and calls on the Government to make representations to Turkey to stop its persecution of Kurdish parliamentarians and move towards the restarting of negotiations to find a peaceful solution to the Kurdish conflict which is the real root of the problem.

Write to your MP! We need to get as many MPs as possible to sign this motion by writing to them, calling them or even visiting them to ask them to sign EDM 261. To find out who your MP is you can visit the website: www.writetothem.com and enter your postcode. The site brings up your MP along with your other elected representatives and you can also email your MP directly from this site. You can download this model letter if you are unsure what to write.

18 January 2012

EDM 2617: BOMBING OF KURDISH CIVILIANS IN TURKEY

Session 2010-2012
Date tabled: 18.1.12
Primary sponsor: Williams, Hywel

That this House condemns as reckless and merciless the bombing of Kurdish civilians by Turkish F-16 war planes on 28 December 2011 in the border province of Sirnak, which killed some 35 Kurds aged between 13 and 28 years old, provoking widespread protests among the Kurdish community and condemned by Kurdish politicians as a massacre; believes that such actions, authorised by the government of Prime Minister Recep TayyipErdogan, applauded as a moderate in Europe, can only exacerbate social tensions and unrest between Turkey and the Kurds; further believes that it demonstrates the utter failure of Turkey’s resort to a military solution to the Kurdish problem and that only a genuine democratic opening to the Kurds can resolve the historic grievances of the Kurdish people; and calls on the Government to make representations to the government of Turkey on this issue.

Write to your MP! To find out who your MP is, go to www.writetothem.com and type in your postcode. If you are unsure of what to write, you can download this template letter.

8 November 2011

EDM 2400: RECENT ARRESTS IN TURKEY

Session: 2010-2012
Date tabled: 08.11.11
Primary sponsor: Williams, Hywel

That this House deplores the recent arrest by the Turkish authorities of the respected professor and Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) Assembly member Busra Ersanli and the veteran publisher and writer Ragip Zarakolu; believes that the arrest of two such distinguished figures in Turkish public life has rightly provoked outrage inside the country; notes that there are growing calls inside Turkey for an end to the policy of confrontation and of sweeping criminalisation of Kurdish organisations and for a move to reconciliation and conflict resolution through negotiation; and urges the Government to lend its support to those calls and for it to make clear to the Turkish government its disapproval of those arrests.

18 October 2011

EDM 2267: TURKISH-KURDISH PEACE NEGOTIATIONS

Session: 2010-12
Date tabled: 18.10.2011
Primary sponsor: Williams, Hywel

That this House is deeply concerned at the worsening of relations between Turkey and the Kurds since the election in June; warns against the consequences of the renewed wave of arrests of leading Kurdish politicians, civil society activists and professionals; calls on Turkey to halt immediately its cross-border military operations and bombing of Kurdish camps inside Iraq; believes that this policy of seeking a solution to the Kurdish question by military means and increased repression will prove futile and can only provoke future unrest and conflict; and urges the Government to exert its influence on Turkish leaders to change course and take steps towards a negotiated settlement with the legitimate representatives of the Kurdish people.

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