STUC Declares Solidarity with Kurdish Hunger Strikers and Condemns Criminalisation of Kurds in Scotland

Connor Hayes | 17 April 2019

On Tuesday, 16 April 2019, the 122nd annual Scottish Trade Union Congress (STUC), which ran from 15-17 April and represents 37 trade unions and more than 540,000 people across Scotland, adopted a motion declaring their solidarity with the people around the world who have declared indefinite hunger strike to the protest the unlawful conditions of isolation imposed on imprisoned Kurdish people’s leader Abdullah Ocalan. The emergency motion was proposed by Kathleen Kennedy of the Aberdeen Trade Union Council and Stephen Smellie, Depute Convenor of Unison union and co-convenor of Scottish Solidarity with Kurdistan, and was adopted in a unanimous vote by the congress. Continue reading

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OPEN LETTER TO THE UK FOREIGN SECRETARY JEREMY HUNT

Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP

Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
King Charles Street
London SW1A 2AH

Dear Foreign Secretary,

We write to express our deep concern over the UK government’s position in its relations with Turkey as the human rights situation inside the country continues to deteriorate rapidly. In particular, we seek to urgently draw your attention to the 7,000 Kurdish political prisoners on hunger strike in Turkish prisons and the solidarity hunger strikes now spreading across Europe, including in the UK.  Seven Kurdish political prisoners in Turkey have taken their own lives in the last three weeks.

The hunger strikers are demanding urgent action to end the persecution of the Kurdish people in Turkey as embodied in the person of Abdullah Ocalan who has been kept in a state of aggravated solitary confinement for approaching 20 years: an inhuman punishment in breach of both domestic laws and international conventions to which Turkey is a signatory. Continue reading

Margaret Owen joins Hunger Strike

PEACE IN KURDISTAN CAMPAIGN

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Margaret Owen OBE joins Hunger Strike. Maxine Peake to address the public meeting at 7pm.

On Tuesday 2nd April Margaret Owen OBE, lawyer, Patron of Peace in Kurdistan, and Director of Widows Through Peace and Democracy will commence a hunger strike in solidarity with Kurdish hunger strikers across Europe, calling for an end to the unlawful prison conditions of Abdullah Ocalan the jailed Kurdish leader.  Owen has been a passionate advocate for Kurdish rights for many years, and now at the age of 86 has decided to take this very significant step. Continue reading

Letter to Secretary of Council of Europe Committee for the Prevention of Torture from the Imrali Delegation.

CPT – Council of Europe Executive Secretary of CPT, Mr. Regis BRILLAT
F – 67075 Strasbourg Cedex,
E-Mail: Regis.BRILLAT@coe.int
CC Head of Division for Turkey of CPT
Mr. Michael NEURAUTER
E-Mail: Michael.NEURAUTER@coe.int
Copy of the letter to Mr. Thorbj.rn Jagland
Secretary General of the Council of Europe

Dear Mr. Regis Brillat,

We are writing to you as members of the 2019 International Peace Delegation to İmralı regarding the unlawful imprisonment conditions of Abdullah OÅNcalan, the leader of the Kurdish people, and the mass hunger strikes that have been undertaken throughout Turkey and across the world to protest these conditions, which are now at a critical point. We write to you to request a meeting with you at the earliest possible time in order to raise our concerns about this situation, and to discuss the findings of the delegation, which are detailed in the report that you will find attached. Continue reading

OPEN LETTER TO THORBJORN JAGLAND, SECRETARY GENERAL OF THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE

Dear Mr Jagland

 RE: TURKEY’S NON-COMPLIANCE WITH ‘NELSON MANDELA RULES’ AND THE CASE OF ABDULLAH OCALAN AND POLITICAL PRISONERS IN TURKEY

 The Council of Europe’s abject failure to condemn Turkey’s treatment of prisoners cannot be excused and now threatens to undermine the credibility of the core values of the European Convention on Human Rights.

As you well know, the Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners was first adopted by the UN in 1957. They were revised in 2015 and adopted as ‘Nelson Mandela Rules’ unanimously by the UN General Assembly to honour the legacy of the late President of South Africa, ‘who spent 27 years in prison in the course of his struggle for global human rights, equality, democracy and the promotion of a culture of peace’. Continue reading

Women delegation from Ireland, Britain and Italy call for the unlawful prison policy of isolation to end.

PRESS RELEASE

 For immediate release

 13 January 2019, Diyarakir, Turkey

 The health of Hakkari 55 year old MP Leyla Güven, who started a hunger strike on 8 November 2018, has reached a life-threatening stage.

Leyla Güven, who is on the 67th day of a hunger strike, has become too weak to  meet with her lawyers. Continue reading

A CALL FOR ENDING THE ISOLATION OF ABDULLAH OCALAN AND ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS IN TURKEY

International Initiative – Freedom for Ocalan – Peace in Kurdistan

&

Peace in Kurdistan Campaign

12 January 2019

 We, the undersigned, call for an immediate end to the solitary confinement of Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan and other political prisoners in Turkey who are being held in gross violation of their human rights and of the norms of the internationally agreed-upon Mandela Rules. Continue reading

Revolutionary Youth Movement of Kurdistan – Internationalist Relations Committee on efforts to lift the ban on the PKK.

     Call: The wish for freedom cannot be banned
    Deutsche Übersetzung: “Der Wunsch nach Freiheit lässt sich nicht verbieten“
    After 25 years of failure – to snuff out the dream of democracy, freedom
    and peace – the German and Turkish governments are still among the
    leading countries fighting globally against democratic protests and
    emancipatory struggles. 25 years ago, the PKK was banned in Germany, yet
    throughout this time the PKK and its project of Democratic Confederalism
    have only grown in significance and appeal. It is no wonder that the Taz
    in September 2014 headlined ‘the PKK belongs to Germany’. On December
    1st we will take to the streets of the German capital to affirm the
    strength of this freedom struggle and the failure of the German-Turkish
    front against democracy – together, as democratic activists, feminists,
    anti-fascists and internationalists.

Continue reading

Your Freedom and Mine: Booklaunch Edinburgh.

Report

On Thursday, 15 November 2018, we hosted a successful event in promotion of the new book Your Freedom and Mine: Abdullah Öcalan and the Kurdish Question in Erdoğan’s Turkey. The book is a compilation of pieces from a variety of contributors with various perspectives from across the Kurdish movement. It centers on the illegal imprisonment of Abdullah Öcalan, the ideological leader of the Kurdish struggle for self-determination, and in particular the role and impact of the various international campaigns that have been founded in solidarity with the Kurdish struggle. Continue reading

HDP MP Ms Leyla Güven on hunger strike.

Please see here the HDP’s statement on Ms Leyla Guven, MP for Hakkari in prison since 31 January 2018, who began an indefinite hunger strike to protest the politics of isolation imposed on Mr Abdullah Ocalan at Imrali Island Prison.

12.11.2018

HDP MP Ms Leyla Güven began an indefinite hunger strike in prison to protest the politics of isolation imposed on Mr Abdullah Öcalan at İmralı Island Prison.

On 7 November 2018, during the third hearing of her case at Diyarbakır 9th Heavy Penal Court, Ms Leyla Güven announced that she began an indefinite hunger strike in protest of the politics of isolation imposed on Mr Abdullah Öcalan at İmralı Island Prison.

Continue reading