By, Joe Glenton, 30 July 2021, The Canary
Armenian, Cypriot, and Kurdish organisations have condemned Turkish aggression in Kurdistan. In a press release, they called for sanctions and diplomatic efforts to stop the Turkish assault on the region.
Signatories included Elif Sarican, co-chair of the Kurdish People’s Democratic Assembly of Britain; Christos Karaolis, president of the National Federation of Cypriots in the UK; and Annette Moskofian, chair of the Armenian National Committee UK.
Bombings of refugee camps and border villages have already been carried out, the groups said. And they warned that the Turkish authorities were also trying to cause conflict between Kurdish groups in the region.
They said the Turkish government launched its assault on Kurdish land on 24 April, the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. The genocide began in 1915, with some estimates putting the number of people murdered or expelled at 1.5 million.
The letter cited the recent Azerbaijan-Armenian war:
In light of Turkish support for Azerbaijan in the 44-day war with Armenia last year, the Turkish state’s general stance in its bordering regions can only be described as aggressive. Further, persistent reports show that the Turkish military deploys chemical weapons and uses jihadist mercenaries in conjunction with their own military efforts.
The groups said they also feared a repeat of Turkey’s past actions in Cyprus:
Following Turkey’s devastating invasion of Cyprus in 1974, we are worried about the possibility of history repeating itself if the UK doesn’t do more. Turkey is a fellow NATO country to the UK, and therefore these military actions must be of concern to the Government.
They called on the UK government to stop the assault through diplomatic pressure.
We urge the Government to use its diplomatic position to stop the invasion and prevent an intra-Kurdish war. We particularly ask for the Government to put in place sanctions to be lifted only when Turkey ceases its military operations in South Kurdistan.
The communities speaking out for Kurdistan have all been affected by Turkish aggression in the past. And they fear that history will repeat unless pressure is put on the current Turkish regime.