“Peace in Kurdistan stands with the Kurds as they mark Newroz and looks forward to a time soon when all Kurds and their friends can celebrate together in freedom without fear or threat of retribution. A future of hope and freedom is within our grasp.”
Peace in Kurdistan would like to send its greetings and solidarity to the Kurdish people and all friends on Newroz, the Kurdish New Year, celebrated on 21 March.
We extend our good wishes and support to Kurds everywhere, to those who enjoy a semblance of safety and security many far from their homeland, but to all those more who exist in precarious circumstances, under persistent threat or who have their freedom stolen from them.
Newroz is traditionally the major date in the annual Kurdish calendar since ancient times. It is an occasion for joining together in a collective expression of hope, goodwill and looking forward with anticipation of what is to come. Newroz celebrations are held in the home and in public spaces, in the town squares and in the mountains, across Kurdistan and wherever Kurdish communities have made their dwelling place.
Newroz is about celebrating Kurdish national identity and the people seizing hold of their destiny, as a means of affirming strength and belief in their own innate powers to shape their own future.
In recent times, Newroz has inevitably become transformed into a focal point for the political struggle and the necessity of resistance. The Turkish state has sought to clampdown on social activities, including cultural events, during Newroz and has savagely repressed peaceful gatherings in Kurdish areas.
The spirit of human resilience and resistance demonstrated by the Kurds throughout their history and in contemporary times finds expression in this ancient festival, now an official holiday in parts of Kurdistan.
The fires of Newroz shed light in the darkness and reignite the resolve of the Kurds to win their freedom and secure justice for their people.
On Newroz, Peace in Kurdistan reaffirms its pledge to work for the freedom of all Kurds, for the release of all political prisoners, for the rights of Kurdish political organisation and for the lifting of the threat to ban, imprison and criminalise legitimate rights and social activities.
On previous years, Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan has made Newroz the occasion for issuing and repeating his call for peace and reconciliation.
On Newroz 2021 we are obliged to reaffirm the demand of freedom for Ocalan, peace for Kurdistan.
Now is the time to step up the demands for Ocalan’s release and for a renewed effort to broker a lasting peace.
We also remember the sacrifices made by countless men and women in the Kurdish freedom movement; we honour the martyrs who made the ultimate sacrifice in giving their lives, but who live on in public memory.
Newroz is a celebration of past struggles and an expression of expectation in the future.
Peace in Kurdistan stands with the Kurds as they mark Newroz and looks forward to a time soon when all Kurds and their friends can celebrate together in freedom without fear or threat of retribution. A future of hope and freedom is within our grasp.
Peace in Kurdistan
Campaign for a political solution of the Kurdish Question
Contacts Estella Schmid: 07846 666 804 & Melanie Gingell: 07572 430903
Patrons: John Austin, Baroness Blower of Starch Green, former GS NUT, Prof Bill Bowring, Julie Christie, Noam Chomsky, Jeremy Corbyn MP, Prof Mary Davis, Lord Dholakia, Simon Dubbins, UNITE International Director, Jill Evans, former MEP, Desmond Fernandes, Lindsey German, Convenor STWC, Melanie Gingell, Christopher Gingell, Prof Dr. Michael Gunter, Secretary-General, EU Turkey Civic Commission (EUTCC), Rahila Gupta, journalist, Nick Hildyard, policy advisor, Dafydd Iwan, Former President Plaid Cymru, James Kelman, Bruce Kent, Jean Lambert, former MEP, Dr Les Levidow, Open University, Elfyn Llwyd, John McDonnell MP; Aonghas MacNeacail, Scottish Gaelic poet, Mike Mansfield QC, David Morgan, journalist, Doug Nicholls, General Secretary, GFTU, Dr. Jessica Ayesha Northey, Sinn Fein MLA Conor Murphy, Dr Thomas Jeffrey Miley, Kate Osamor MP, Margaret Owen OBE, Ali Gul Ozbek, Former Councillor and Mayor of Haringey; Gareth Peirce, Dr Felix Padel, Maxine Peake, actor, Dr Thomas Phillips, Liverpool John Moores University, Trevor Rayne, writer, Joe Ryan, Tony Simpson, Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation, Stephen Smellie, PIK Trade Union Liaison Officer, Jonathan Steele, journalist, Steve Sweeney, journalist, Gianni Tognoni, General Secretary Permanent People’s Tribunal, Dr Tove Skutnabb-Kangas, Dr Federico Venturini, Associate Researcher, University of Udine, Italy; Dr Tom Wakeford, Dr Derek Wall, Julie Ward, former MEP, Kariane Westrheim, Chair, EU Turkey Civic Commission (EUTCC); Hywel Williams MP.