PYD releases a public statement on military threat from Turkey

The Democratic Union Party  (PYD) release this statement yesterday responding to threats from the Turkish government about intervening militarily in Syria:

Public Statement

Dear Sir or Madam,

In the last few days, some officials of the Turkish government issued threatening statements, which resulted in the mobilisation of Turkish troops near the Syrian border. We, the Democratic Union Party (PYD), would like to clarify to our people and the international community our stance on this matter. Continue reading “PYD releases a public statement on military threat from Turkey”

PYD condemns deadly ISIS massacre in Kobane

The Executive Committee of the PYD has released this statement on the massacre in Kobane last week, the worst single atrocity committed by ISIS in Syria since the conflict began.

Statement of the Executive Committee of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) to the Syrian and International Public Opinion: Kobane massacre, a moral test for all humanitarian organisations.

The despicable and cowardly massacre in Kobane against unarmed civilians committed by ISIS, is a blatant crime against humanity and challenges the conscience of the world and all relevant human rights organizations. The world needs to stand on the side of the people’s protection units, YPG, and the women’s protection units, YPG, together with fighters from Burkan al Firat, who have bravely fought the barbaric ISIS gangs and their masters in Ankara.

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The Syria Conflict: West Wants War / Selected articles, August & September 2013

Below we have collated a number of articles from the last two weeks, some of which we added also to our news briefings, which cover the West’s march towards war in Syria and analyse the latest struggles for Rojava’s survival within these latest developments.

Al-Qaeda: A Force for “Good”
9 August 2013 / Rudaw
Trouble is ominously brewing in the once-quiet, northeastern Kurdish corner of Syria where violent terrorist groups affiliated with al-Qaeda, Jabhat al-Nusrah and Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) have begun cold-bloodedly attacking the Kurds.  Bloodthirsty beheadings, reminiscent of Nick Berg, the American cruelly carved up in Iraq in 2004, horrifically bloat today’s Kurdish news.   Kurds are alarmed. Americans should be too. But America is closing its eyes—and closing its embassies around the world in the face of Al-Qaeda inspired terrorist threats. Puzzled Kurds have asked me why America is so indifferent to the Kurdish beheadings, especially when these same “disciples of enforced ignorance” attacked Americans only a decade ago.  I wonder too, and paraphrase Heraclitus who said, “Character is destiny,” and tell them: “Geography is destiny.”

Continue reading “The Syria Conflict: West Wants War / Selected articles, August & September 2013”

Military strikes against Syria ‘a violation of UN Charter’ – ELDH

[updated – 30 August 2013]

European Lawyers for Democracy and Human Rights (ELDH) Statement on Syria and potential military strikes:

30 August 2013

The European Lawyers for Democracy and Human Rights (ELDH), with members in 18 European countries, is absolutely opposed to the proposed use of illegal force by Western powers against the Syrian regime.

The US government is leading a call for military action against Syria which will of necessity kill civilians, with the ostensible purpose of showing the Syrian government that by killing large numbers of civilians (allegedly with chemical weapons) they have crossed a “red line” and must be punished.

Continue reading “Military strikes against Syria ‘a violation of UN Charter’ – ELDH”

Full Support from Turkey to Al Qaeda

Reproduced from ANF and translated from the Turkish original:

Important information regarding the links between Turkey and Al Qaeda has surfaced after three Tunisian Al Qaeda militants were arrested by Afrin public security forces in Rojava. The militants, who passed through Istanbul Ataturk Airport-Antakya-Cilvegozu border gate into Syria officially, were accompanied by Turkish military officers.

Turkish authorities have not acknowledged any links with Al Qaeda despite the many documents and information to the contrary. The passports used by the three Tunisian Al Qaeda militants arrested by Afrin public security forces is further proof of this relationship. They show that the three Tunisians passed through Istanbul Ataturk Airport to Antakya and then crossed the border into Syria from Cilvegozu border gate officially.

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IN THE GLASSHOUSE, by Norman Paech

NATO-member Turkey supports the rebels in Syria – yet persecutes the opposition movement in its own country

Norman Paech


Turkey is in a complex situation, which the Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and his AKP government, seem to want to cover up. The incontestable economic successes – whereby the completely under-developed rights of the working population have been accepted – make the country a power factor between East and West. The strategic location of Turkey for the transportation of oil and gas from the Caspian region and the Middle East into Europe provides the ever-assertive government with a comfortable negotiating position with the Europeans. This clearly allows Ankara to bring EU-membership into play without having to compromise on the biggest obstacle to its membership so far – the unresolved Cyprus question. Greece is weak and is having its sovereignty rapidly taken away, almost degraded to a protectorate. Why back down against the EU and the UN, when, evidently, a politics of “banging one’s fist on the table” is the only one honoured? This is also apparent in the fact that Erdogan can afford to pick a fight with a state, with which it not so long ago had a distinguished relationship – Israel, the EU’s most controversial protegé. Continue reading “IN THE GLASSHOUSE, by Norman Paech”

Diversion of Tigris river completed, construction of actual dam starting

A new construction phase was celebrated at the Ilisu dam site with a big ceremony last week: The Tigris river has been diverted at the construction site now flowing through three big tunnels. This diversion will be maintained for several years. Now the construction of the actual dam in the dry river bed begins.

Construction of the Ilisu Dam begins

The Turkish Minister of the Environment Veysel Eroglu called the Ilisu dam an “important strategic and economic project”.  He stated that the project will be finished in summer 2014. After that it will take one more year to flood the reservoir.

It remains unclear, whether by “strategic” he is addressing the national Turkish-Kurdish conflict or the international consequences (mainly for Iraq). Once the Ilisu dam operates, Iraq will be even more dependent Turkish water policies. The livelihoods of about 6 Million people in Iraq depend on the Tigris river by using the water for irrigation or fishing. By cutting down the water flow, Ilisu will also put an end to the Mesopotamian Marshes, culturally and ecologically one of the most important areas worldwide. Continue reading “Diversion of Tigris river completed, construction of actual dam starting”

PUBLIC EVENT: Turkey, the Kurdish Struggle and the New Middle East


Turkey, the Kurdish Struggle and the New Middle East

Saturday, 7 July, 5.15-6.45pm
Gustave Tuck Lecture Theatre
University College London, Gower Street, WC1E 6BT* How to find us.

Speakers: Akif Wan, Kurdistan National Congress (KNK) UK
Dr Felix Padel
,  Social Anthropologist, Author and Political Activist

Chaired by: David Morgan, Peace in Kurdistan Campaign

Discussion organised by Peace in Kurdistan: campaign for a political solution to the Kurdish Question

The historic struggle of the Kurds in Turkey has reached a new intensity at a time when popular uprisings in the Middle East are overturning anti-democratic regimes in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Syria, in a social ferment that has left no state untouched. Continue reading “PUBLIC EVENT: Turkey, the Kurdish Struggle and the New Middle East”

Turkey 2011 Progress Report debated in EP

The European Parliament recently published the Resolution on Turkey’s 2011 Progress Report regarding Turkey’s bid for EU membership. The draft report, written by the EP’s Turkey rapporteur, Ria Oomen-Ruijten, was discussed at a plenary on the 28-29 March, and a summary of that debate has been released. We reproduce it here for you to read comments from representative from round Europe on the issue: Continue reading “Turkey 2011 Progress Report debated in EP”