For almost seven months, the Turkish army has been carrying out attacks on South Kurdistan (North Iraq) which aim at occupying the region. Lately, the extensive use of chemical weapons by Turkey in its attacks has been increasingly raised internationally. We would therefore like to use this opportunity to draw your attention to some of the major developments of the past weeks:
– On November 1, the HPG (People`s Defense Forces) commander Dr. Bager Baran invited international delegations to carry out on-the-ground investigations into the use of chemical weapons by Turkey in South Kurdistan. He explicitly offered to provide help for such investigations: “We do not have the means to investigate the chemical substances used in these weapons. But delegations can come and investigate. We can support such institutions and organizations in their investigations.”
– In an interview on November 3, the Swiss oncologist Prof. Franco Cavalli, former president of the International Union against Cancer (UICC), stressed the urgent need to investigate Turkey`s use of chemical weapons. He suggested for international delegations to visit the affected areas and “take samples from the bodies of deceased Kurdish fighters and from the soils where toxic gases have been used”. “We are sure that some banned warfare is being used, but we need lab results to make the international media report about this”, he stated.
– On November 5, the Health Committee Kurdistan Democratic Communities Union (KCK) called on international institutions and organization, especially the OPCW, UN and Doctors Without Borders, to investigate the issue of the use of chemical weapons by Turkey. The KCK offered its support for on-the-ground investigations in South Kurdistan: “We call on you to live up to your tasks, investigate the use of chemical weapons by the Turkish occupation forces in the guerrilla areas of South Kurdistan as soon as possible and without further passing of valuable time and to thus stop this crime. We would like to emphasize here that we are ready to provide all necessary support and assistance for these efforts.”
Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information or interview requests with KCK officials.
KCK Press Office