Kurds for an independent Scotland

JOINT STATEMENT BY THE KURDISH COMMUNITY OF THE UK

30 May 2014

 

KURDS FOR AN INDEPENDENT SCOTLAND

 

On 18 September 2014, the Scottish people have an opportunity to determine their own future as an independent country in a free vote. The choice that they make in this independence referendum will influence the lives of future generations. Furthermore, the result will have a profound impact on the fortunes of peoples throughout the world – the Kurds included – who hold similar aspirations to take greater control of their own lives and who are seeking to determine their own futures.

 

At stake are not borders, national flags or emblems, but whether free people have the right to decide their own futures in a democratic state. It is for this reason that the Kurds will be watching closely the vitally important developments unfolding in Scotland over the next few months.

 

The Kurds, involved in their own historic national struggle for respect and recognition as a people, see democratic autonomy as forming the basis of a new relationship between themselves and their neighbours whereby all peoples in their region are treated as equals.

 

The Kurds in Kurdistan have been expressing a resounding ‘Yes’ in increasing numbers to the strategy of deepening democratisation. In Southeast Turkey and in Rojava in Syria in particular the Kurds have been taking greater control of their destinies in a democratic process that they regard as ultimately unstoppable.

The Scottish people have the right to choose independence and build a strong, new relationship between Scotland and the rest of the UK. This is what a ‘Yes’ vote essentially means; the alternative is to remain within the old structure of the centralised British state where all key decisions influencing their lives and livelihoods are taken in the Westminster Parliament. If the Scottish people have the courage to vote ‘Yes’ they will start to construct a new partnership of equals with the rest of the British Isles.

 

The Kurdish community in Britain, through their representative civil society organisations across the UK, recognise the historic significance of the coming referendum in Scotland. As such, we would like to express support for ‘Yes’ vote and believe that an independent Scotland will improve the lives of the people considerably.

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Peace in Kurdistan Campaign is looking for a Communications and Outreach Volunteer  

 

Peace in Kurdistan campaign is looking for a volunteer to assist the campaign with a variety of communications and outreach work, including social media presence, website, weekly newsletters and events support.  This position would be ideally suited for someone looking for experience of working in an independent solidarity campaign, or in communications for the voluntary sector.

 

Typical weekly duties would include:

–      Monitoring news coverage and preparing weekly news bulletins
–      Updating the Campaign’s website to keep it fresh and up-to-date
–      Managing the Campaign’s social media platforms
–      Assisting with administration for public events, including generating publicity
–      Building and maintaining relationships with the traditional media

Skills and knowledge we are looking for:

–      Experience in writing and editing blog posts
–      Familiarity with web-based communications and social media platforms (experience with WordPress would be an advantage)
–      Strong attention to detail and organisational skills
–      Interest for issues around self-determination, minority rights, political prisoners and conflict resolution
–      Knowledge and interest in issues facing the Kurdish community in the UK and in the Kurdish region.

 

Whilst we would ideally need someone who can dedicate two days a week, as this is a voluntary position we would be open to discussing the hours you would work. We can also cover expenses for travel and lunch.

To apply, please send us a copy of your CV with a short cover letter demonstrating your interest in volunteering with us, how your skills and experience are suited to the work and how many hours you would be available each week, to: estella24@tiscali.co.uk

 

About Peace in Kurdistan Campaign

Since it was launched in October 1994, the Peace in Kurdistan Campaign has established itself as a vital and tireless campaigning organisation dedicated to advancing the rights of the Kurdish people and campaigning for a political solution to the Kurdish question. Over the years we have mobilised support for innumerable campaigns in defence of the Kurdish community in Britain and Europe and publicised countless cases of Kurdish political prisoners – journalists, artists, lawyers, politicians and trade unionists.

 

Democratic Autonomy in North Kurdistan – new book!

Draft-kurdistan-webA new book has been published entitled Democratic Autonomy in North Kurdistan:

In order to find a peaceful solution to the Kurdish question, the Kurdish Freedom Movement in Turkey has developed an alternative social model: Democratic Autonomy.

In the fall of 2011, a group of TATORT activists journeyed into the Kurdish regions of Turkey to learn how the theory of Democratic Autonomy was being put into practice. They discovered a remarkable experiment in face-to-face democracy—all the more notable for being carried out in wartime.

Since 2005, under the most difficult of conditions, the movement in North Kurdistan has created structures for a democratic, ecological and gender-liberated society. At its core is a system of councils in villages, cities, and neighborhoods. These structures do not yet offer a way of life that is fully independent of the nation-state and the market economy, but they nonetheless reveal a potent civil counter-power.

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Newroz festival to take place this Sunday in Finsbury Park

Invitation to Newroz 2013 Celebrations in Finsbury Park, London N4

Sunday 24 March 2013, 1pm – 7pm

Come and join us to celebrate the Newroz Festival – Kurdish New Year – which will be taking place in Finsbury Park this coming Sunday afternoon to early evening.

Newroz is an ancient annual festival celebrated on 21 March in Kurdistan to usher in the spring. Throughout Kurdistan millions of people gather each year to enjoy music, food and dance, and to celebrate Kurdish cultural traditions. It is a family holiday but unfortunately, far too often in Turkey these occasions have been marred by violence as the authorities seek to repress Kurdish self-expression.

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Europe’s Kurds march in their thousands in Paris

These photos are courtesy of David Brunetti, many thanks to him for sending them on to us.