Kurdistan Freedom Party speaks on its role

Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! no. 103 - October/November 1991

Over 40 guerrillas from the newly-formed PAK (Kurdistan Freedom Party) were training with their PKK/ARGK comrades. A leading PAK member described how, in the 1980s, the KDP (Kurdistan Democratic Party) had prevented Kurds from south Kurdistan linking up with the PKK. However, Saddam's brutal repression undermined the credibility of Barzani's KDP and Talabani's PUK (Patriotic Union of Kurdistan) leadership.

PAK: 'Following Halabja in March 1988, which was a disaster for Kurdish liberated areas, developments in north west Kurdistan allowed people in south Kurdistan (Iraq) to form direct relations with the PKK. Many people began to join in the ranks of the PKK. Some came from east Kurdistan (Iran) and some from towns in south Kurdistan and Iraq proper.

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Visit to Kurdistan

Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! no. 103 - October/November 1991

FRFI supporter WILLIAM MARTIN recently visited Kurdistan and sent us this report of oppression and resistance.

The warmth, kindness and hospitality extended to me by the Kurds of the village of Yesilynva contrasted sharply with the realities of daily life in this part of north west Kurdistan. Close to the town of Uludere and hugging the mountains straddling the Turkish/Iraqi border, Yesilynva is literally in the front line of resistance to the Turkish state. In defiance of Turkicisation, the Kurdish population still call Uludere and Yesilynva by their Kurdish names of Qilaban and Rapin.

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Kurdistan: revolution at a crucial juncture


Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! no. 114 - August/September 1993

Republished as Chapter 3.4 in The New Warlords: from the Gulf War to the recolonisation of the Middle East, ed. Eddie Abrahams, Larkin Publications, 1994.

Events during the past year: Syria's closure of Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) bases in Lebanon, the joint Kurdish Democratic Party — Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (KDP-PUK) and Turkish army assaults on the PKK in South Kurdistan (northern Iraq), the PKK's unilateral ceasefire and resumption of hostilities in the face of Turkish state intransigence have brought the Kurdish revolution to a critical stage. TREVOR RAYNE reports.

Financial Times: Abdullah Ocalan has agreed to extend his ceasefire. Are you closer to a solution?

Suleyman Demirel: We never hear him, whatever he says. If you start hearing him, then he becomes a party to the problem . . . We should never deal with him. (Financial Times 7 May 1993)

On 17 March 1993 PKK General Secretary Abdullah Ocalan accompanied by Jalal Talabani, leader of the PUK from South Kurdistan declared a unilateral ceasefire in the Kurdish liberation struggle to run over the 21 March Newroz (New Year). The ceasefire was extended indefinitely on 16 April when Ocalan made the following demands: an end to the annihilation of Kurdish people and Turkey's military operations; a general amnesty; cultural rights such as Kurdish language radio and television stations, newspapers and books; the right to the unfettered use of the Kurdish language and the legalisation of Kurdish political organisations; the right for displaced persons to return to their homes and be compensated for damage to their houses and loss of livestock; abolition of the system of regional governors and the disarming of the village guards. Ocalan warned that if the Turkish Republic continued its operations then the ceasefire would be meaningless and the guerrilla war would have to be resumed. He appealed to the UN and to the European Parliament to send delegates to Kurdistan to observe the ceasefire.

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Kurdistan: an oppressed nation


Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! no. 102 - August/September 1991

Republished as Chapter 3.2 in The New Warlords: from the Gulf War to the recolonisation of the Middle East, ed. Eddie Abrahams, Larkin Publications, 1994.

'We were witnesses that the Turkish state has officially declared war. Without any reason they keep shooting innocent people. Many people are dead or injured.' This was the message from Diyarbakir in North West Kurdistan (Turkey) from Popular Labour Party (HEP) MP Mahmut Alinak after the funeral of his comrade Vedat Aydin on 10 July. Vedat Aydin was chair of the Diyarbakir branch of HEP. He had been abducted by a unit of the Turkish state's Special Forces, tortured, his body riddled with bullets and dumped. The Kurdish people's response to this activity was massive and determined: 100,000 turned the burial into a proclamation that the Kurdish national liberation struggle will not be terrorised into submission.

The Turkish army responded with further terror. Commandos and tanks ringed Diyarbakir. Helicopters bombed coaches carrying mourners to the funeral. Counter-insurgency teams opened fire on the crowds who refused to disperse, chanted the illegal slogans of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and fought back with sticks and stones.

By 13 July reports indicated some 40 people killed, 208 injured and 1,000 missing. The Special Forces have been seen burying corpses at night. Hundreds of people have been arrested, including Turkish and foreign journalists.

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Turkish state commits mass murder in Cizre

The Kurdistan National Congress (KNK) has issued a statement saying that almost 60 civilians were killed in Cizre on 7 February 2016 by Turkish state forces. It is possible that chemical weapons were used. The 60 dead people were wounded, took refuge and were trapped in the basements of two buildings in Cizre. Turkish state forces would not allow medical staff, elected politicians or family access to them before they were finally killed. The hideous manner of their death is a deliberate warning to all Kurds not to resist Erdogan and the AKP government. Turkish state broadcaster, TRT, proclaimed ‘60 terrorists killed in Cizre’ and the Prime Minister Davutoglu said it was ‘A successful operation’ . On 10 February there are reports of some 25 more people in Cizre trapped in a third basement by Turkish armed forces and facing slaughter.

Cizre is a predominantly Kurdish city of approximately 115,000 people in south-east Turkey/North Kurdistan, close to the Syrian border. It was blockaded and placed under curfew by the Turkish forces on 12 December 2015 and has been attacked by tanks and heavy artillery since. Cizre is one of several Kurdish towns and cities in Turkey to have declared self-rule. It has been attacked by the Turkish state, defended itself and has been placed under curfew. Turkey’s President Erdogan and his Justice and Development Party (AKP) government have unleashed a ferociously savage war against the Kurdish people in Turkey, with the acquiescence of the British government, the European Union and the US - this complicity in slaughter must be stopped.

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