The Freedom for Öcalan trade union campaign interviewed Simon Dubbins, co-chair of the campaign and International Director at Unite the Union at the 2019 Tolpuddle Martyrs Festival. We asked Simon about his thoughts on the progress and future of the campaign, the international situation and the engagement of UK politicians in the Kurdish struggle.
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 “STUC Declares Solidarity with Kurdish Hunger Strikers and Condemns Criminalisation of Kurds in Scotland”
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 “OPEN LETTER TO THE UK FOREIGN SECRETARY JEREMY HUNT”
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 “Margaret Owen joins Hunger Strike”
CPT – Council of Europe Executive Secretary of CPT, Mr. Regis BRILLAT
F – 67075 Strasbourg Cedex,
E-Mail: [email protected]
CC Head of Division for Turkey of CPT
Mr. Michael NEURAUTER
E-Mail: [email protected]
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 “Letter to Secretary of Council of Europe Committee for the Prevention of Torture from the Imrali Delegation.”
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 “OPEN LETTER TO THORBJORN JAGLAND, SECRETARY GENERAL OF THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE”