Tendance Coatesy

Left Socialist Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Turkey

Turkey: People’s Democratic Party (HDP) Makes Urgent Call for International Solidarity Against Mounting Violence.

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Turkish Nationalists and Islamists Lead Attacks on  HDP



Turkey is increasingly drifting into a civil war. Politics of violence have escalated after the general elections of June 7 led by the AKP provisional government. Today, the peace and negotiation process between PKK and the Turkish state has come to a halt and war has started again.

Just within the last month, severe clashes have taken place in many Kurdish cities such as Silopi, Lice, Şemdinli, Silvan, Yüksekova and Cizre where the civilian population has been targeted by state forces. Tens of civilians, guerillas and members of state security forces have died in the ensuing clashes. Since July 24, the AKP interim government has not been attacking ISIS, as it claims to be doing, but the Qandil Mountains in the territory of the Kurdistan Regional Government instead, as well as Kurds, democratic forces, democratic politics, civilians, women and the opposition as a whole in Turkey.

The Turkish state and the provisional AKP government are implementing all sorts of oppressive measures such as forbidding entry into and departure from Kurdish cities against which it launches military operations, cutting off all communication including phone and internet lines, blocking off press and observers to prevent the truth about what is happening on the ground from reaching national and international public attention. A curfew has been in place in the province of Cizre for the past week where 21 civilians have been killed. The province of Cizre have been under siege for days where there is serious shortage of food, water, access to basic health services, preventative treatment of the wounded, and burial of those who have been killed by state security forces. Serious concerns regarding fears of civilian massacre in Cizre have been voiced by the elected members of the parliament and civil society organizations.

In this very violent situation, HDP has also been targeted by AKP spokespersons and pro-AKP mass media. Almost every day, our party officials and especially our co-chairs are being put on the target for those “nationalist and patriotic” people. Many calls and statements of AKP officials have been signaling a call for war against HDP. As a result of this violent discourse of AKP, many of our buildings in several cities have been attacked by groups of people associated with racist and fascist groups. On September 8, they attacked our HQ in Ankara, setting fire to the building. Our party archives and records were targeted specifically. No one was injured in the attack but our HQ is now heavily damaged and unavailable for use.


The headquarters of the HDP in Ankara was badly damaged by fire on Tuesday night (9 Sept)

Until now, over 128 party buildings all over the country have been attacked. Moreover, the police and other security forces of the state did not do their job to prevent the attacks.

We once again want to emphasize that HDP is not a part of these violence-based, war- oriented policies. As HDP, we did not take part in any decision-making process of the war. On the contrary, we are trying to push both PKK and the Turkish state to end this armed conflict. It should be known that it is the AKP who is insisting on war politics and implementing anti- democratic practices all over the country.

In spite of these adverse developments, we call on all international communities, civil society organizations and the international media for solidarity and support to bring about an immediate cease-fire and the commencement of peace talks. Our call is also one for urgent action against increasing state violence, the violation of human rights and anti-democratic practices and measures ins Kurdish cities as well as the cities in the western regions of the country. We now need the support of the international public more than ever in order to achieve the realization of a lasting peace in the Middle East, Turkey and Kurdistan. In this context we invite all of our friends, political parties, associations, networks, civil society organizations and all peace-loving forces to act in solidarity with us. We call on all democratic international institutions and forces to take concrete steps against the Turkish state’s violent, anti-democratic actions against its own people and citizens.

Foreign Affairs Commission of HDP
10 September 2015

Written by Andrew Coates

September 11, 2015 at 5:17 pm

Anti-Kurdish Violence in Turkey Spirals out of Hand.

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Hundreds of Turkish fascists in Istanbul chanting tonight: “We don’t want a military operation, we want a genocide”, referring to the ongoing war against the Kurds.

Save Kobane Facebook.


Smoke comes from HDP headquarters after attack by nationalist demonstrators in Ankara. 8 Sept 2015

A crowd has attacked the headquarters of Turkey’s pro-Kurdish HDP party, amid rising violence between Turkish forces and the militant Kurdish PKK group.

Pictures from the scene appeared to show the HDP building in the capital, Ankara, on fire.

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has appealed for calm.

Earlier, Turkish ground forces crossed into Iraq in pursuit of Kurdish militants for the first time since a ceasefire with the PKK two years ago.

Turkish warplanes also launched a wave of air strikes on bases of the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) in northern Iraq.


US concerned by attacks on media outlets in Turkey

By Yerevan Saeed

WASHINGTON DC—The US State Department called on Turkey’s ruling party and government officials Tuesday to not encourage violence against media workers amid street protests and clashes in Istanbul and other Turkish cities.

“We’re concerned by reports that the protests against the Hurriyet Daily were encouraged by members of the Justice and Development Party,” said State Department’s Spokesperson John Kirby. “Elected officials must be careful not to appear to encourage violence against media outlets,” he added.

Washington voiced its concern after pro-government protesters, including an AKP member of parliament, attacked Hurriyet Daily, an independent liberal media outlet for misquoting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as he spoke live on Haber TV.

The Turkish president was answering questions about the Daglica incident in which 16 Turkish soldiers were killed in a roadside bomb attack by the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

Hurriyet Daily had allegedly challenged the president on his election promise that the conflict with the PKK would not have resumed if his AKP party had won 400 parliamentary seats.

The newspaper published Erdogan’s exact words later on, and said it would make proper inquiries about the misquoting incident.

The State Dept. Spokesperson Kirby said that media freedom and due process were “key elements in every healthy democracy”, urging Ankara to uphold these values.
“The quality of Turkey’s democracy matters to us, and we expect Turkish authorities to uphold Turkey’s core values, democratic foundations, and universally recognized fundamental freedoms,” said Kirby.
Amidst ongoing violence between the Turkish army and the PKK southeast of the country, Turkey recently detained several reporters including two British and a Dutch journalist, inviting international condemnation.



HDP official: anti-Kurd attacks a step to civil war.

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – An official from the People’s Democratic Party’s (HDP) has accused Turkey on Tuesday of waging a war against the Kurds, claiming that 128 of the pro-Kurdish party’s buildings were attacked Monday.

HDP Co-chair Figen Yuksekdag said in a press conference Tuesday that the Kurds have been subject to harassment and attacks have been carried out on Kurdish political party buildings, homes and vehicles by groups across Turkey.

Yuksekdag said “facist” groups killed a worker on Monday for speaking Kurdish and Turkish police did not intervene.

Yuksekdag said the recent attacks are a dangerous step toward civil war.

In Turkey’s Niğde province, in the southern part of Central Anatolia, a group of nearly 500 protesters attacked the HDP provincial branch in the city of Nigde building with stones, according to Today’s Zaman news agency.

Similar attacks were staged in the Manavgat, Antalya, Mersin, Sakarya, Çorlu and Kayseri provinces, with protesters throwing rocks at the party’s local headquarters and hanging Turkish flags on the buildings.

Tensions also ran high in the Beypazarı district of Ankara on Monday night. A group of some 200 people who marched in the district to protest the PKK were pelted with rocks as they passed through the Zafer neighborhood where Kurdish seasonal workers reside, the news agency reported.

There were several injuries sustained in the incidents, according to police.

During the recent clashes between the PKK and Turkish Army, 100 civilians were reportedly killed during four days of heavy attacks.




Urgent: Disturbing Coordinated mob-attacks, and lynchings against the Kurds in Western Turkey:

Hundreds of Kurdish civilians in Western Turkey injured and several killed. Police have participated in the attacks against Kurdish civilians.

Turkish president Erdogan and the AKP have provoked fascist, nationalist and racist groups into protesting and forming lynching groups who have engaged in terrorizing Kurdish civilians by attacking homes in different districts in Istanbul, Ankara, Kirsehir, Kocaeli, İzmir, Balikesir, Malatya, Mulga, Mersin, Keçiören, Tuzluçayır, Beypazarı, Balgat, Isparta, Konya, Antalya and many other cities.
Following ongoing provocations by the R.T. Erdogans government, pro AKP racists and fascist groups have engaged in coordinated attacks against Kurdish civilians, including attacking Kurdish shops, houses, businesses, and HDP offices. These attacks have been ongoing for the past 48 hours.

Hundreds of Kurdish civilians in Western Turkey have been injured during the attacks by these fascists, and an unknown number of people killed. Hundreds of Kurds in different Turkish cities are currently blockaded in HDP offices, where they have sought safety from the lynching mobs. The mobs have broken windows, chanted anti-Kurdish and HDP slogans, with local police not intervening to stop the terrorism of the mobs.

Since the start of the Turkish war on the Kurds 32 years ago, this is the first time that such casualties have occurred to such a large scale. Erdogan and AKP are directly, explicitly, and deliberately provoking racial and nationalist clashes. Two days ago Erdogan gave the official order to the police forces to shoot civilians on sight if they are deemed a “threat”. He also called on the public to inform on fellow civilians who are considered to act “suspiciously”. This is an attempt to divide society and promote internal conflict between ethnic groups, and stimulate anti-Kurdish racism.

The mobs are organising themselves across social media, forming groups and attacking homes known to belong to Kurdish families. Attacks on 128 HDP offices have occurred with HDP signs and slogans ripped off and replaced with the Turkish flag. Other offices have been set on fire. Mobs are stopping local buses travelling between cities and checking civilian identity cards to determine who is Kurdish or not. When the bus drivers have attempted to drive off to escape the angry mobs, the police intervened and stopped the buses leading to further attacks against the buses, drivers and civilians. In some cases, the police have participated in the attacks with the fascist mobs against the Kurdish civilians.

The attacks on Kurdish homes, civilians and neighbourhoods are still ongoing and hundreds of thousands of Kurds in these major cities are currently in direct danger.

We call on the international community to stand with the Kurds in light of these disturbing and clearly coordinated attacks, and to act immediately to call on the Erdogan government to end its violent, racist and divisive policies.

Kurdistan National Congress – KNK

Written by Andrew Coates

September 9, 2015 at 11:36 am

Shilan Ozcelik, Kurdish Volunteer, on Trial for Trying to Join Fight Against Islamic State.

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Shilan Ozcelik Trial Begins at the Old Bailey – First PKK Trial in Over a Decade.

Kurdistan Tribune.

Kurdish woman Shilan Ozcelik, who was arrested in January for allegedly attempting to join the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), will appear in court on Monday 7 September, 10am, for the first day of her trial.

The 18 year old was charged with ‘engaging in conduct in preparation to for giving an effect to an intention to commit acts of terrorism’ under section 5 (10) (a) of the Terrorism Act 2006 and has been held on remand in Holloway prison since early March.

Her arrest and charge was met with outrage by the Kurdish community in the UK and supporters of the Kurdish struggle, who condemned it as a blatant example of selective and political criminalisation of the Kurdish community, which has continued since the PKK was listed as a ‘terrorist organisation’ in 2000.

We reject this labelling of the PKK, which we believe confuses the Kurdish people’s legitimate struggle for self-determination with terrorism and has the effect of criminalising anyone in the Kurdish community who is part of peaceful political activity. We know that Shilan has never committed any act of violence and poses no threat to the people of this country. As such, we reiterate our call for the charges against her to be dropped.

Her arrest also came at the height of the ISIS siege on Kobane, Rojava, when the YPG and YPG, the Kurdish self-defence forces, resisted a fierce onslaught which garnered them international recognition. These forces, along with the PKK, have been coordinating with the US authorities to fight ISIS in northern Syria, despite the terrorism designation that looks increasingly nonsensical.

The PKK was, until the end of July, holding to a two-year long ceasefire while early stage negotiations between PKK leadership and the Turkish government were taking place. The party has made numerous statements declaring their commitment to a peaceful resolution to the Kurdish question in Turkey, and currently plays a key role in the stabilisation of northern Syria and Iraq. Given this context, the arrest of a young Kurdish woman for allegedly attempting to join the fight against ISIS seems more than a little contradictory.

Peace in Kurdistan Campaign has begun a postcard campaign calling for the government to drop the charges against Shilan. We aim to send hundred of postcards to land on the Home Office doorstep and we need as many people as possible to send them.

Contact us on estella24@tiscali.co.uk  / knklondon@gn.apc.org and we will send you a set of cards.

Woman in court for alleged PKK ties.

Morning Star.

Monday 7th Lamiat Sabin.

A WOMAN accused of terrorism-related activity is set to appear at the Old Bailey today in the first trial involving the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in more than a decade.

Shilan Ozcelik was arrested in January for allegedly attempting to join the PKK, designated a terrorist group by Britain in 2001.

The 18-year-old from Highbury, north London, is charged with “engaging in conduct in preparation to and for giving an effect to an intention to commit acts of terrorism” under the Terrorism Act 2006.

Ms Ozcelik has been held on remand since March in Holloway Prison after she was arrested at Stansted Airport while returning from Syria on suspicion of travelling to fight against the so-called Islamic State (Isis).

She is also accused of attempting to join the Women’s Protection Units of the PKK.

Ms Ozcelik and her family claimed that she had gone to Syria to be an aid worker.

The Kurdish community in Britain criticised the charge as a “blatant example of selective and political criminalisation.”

“We know that Shilan has never committed any act of violence and poses no threat to the people of this country.

“As such, we reiterate our call for the charges against her to be dropped,” the Peace in Kurdistan Campaign said in a statement.

“We reject this labelling of the PKK (as terrorist), which we believe confuses the Kurdish people’s legitimate struggle for self-determination with terrorism and has the effect of criminalising anyone in the Kurdish community who is part of peaceful political activity.”

Turkey broke a ceasefire with the PKK last month after a strong showing by Kurdish political party HDP in recent elections.

More information on the campaign:

Free Shilan! Drop the charges!

Meanwhile in Turkey:

Racist attacks on HDP offices and Kurds across Turkish cities.

ANF news Desk.

September the 8th.

Large numbers of racist groups have started a Kurd-hunt in a number of Turkish cities, in which some 126 offices of the HDP (Peoples’ Democratic Party) were attacked across the country since yesterday.

Large numbers of racist groups have started a Kurd-hunt in a number of Turkish cities, in which some 126 offices of the HDP (Peoples’ Democratic Party) were attacked across the country since yesterday.

Police took no action against the aggressive assailants who blamed HDP for the current situation in Turkey, without ever mentioning the role of the AKP despite it clearly stating that “None of these would have happened if we had won 400 seats in the parliament”.

Still unable to accept the results of the June 7 elections and pointing at HDP as the responsible side for the ongoing conflict, government officials, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu in the first place, keep making statements provoking attacks of avenge against the party, as well as the Kurdish population in the country and the Kurdish armed movement, PKK, which voiced numerous calls for peace and negotiations even after the ending of the solution process due to the AKP’s failure to win what it desired.

Local racist groups are also promoted and reportedly supported by the AKP that faced a big disappointment in the elections in which HDP received 13 percent of the votes across the country and thus didn’t allow AKP to come to the power alone.


Many extreme nationalists attacked in large groups on the HDP, DBP buildings and the mainly Kurdish inhabited neighbourhoods in many districts of Ankara last night.


A large group of racists attacked the DBP headquarters in Balgat district of Ankara by throwing stones and chanting racist slogans against the Kurds at around 20:00 yesterday evening. While police forces did not intervene the attack, the signboard of the party was broken down by the group. The action of the racists in front of the DBP building lasted until 02:00.


In Beypazarı district of Ankara, another large group marched from the district centre to Zafer neighbourhood where mainly Kurdish people live and attacked the houses and shops of the Kurdish citizens, setting fire to some of the houses and vehicles. While the Kurdish people in the neighbourhood responded to attacks with self-defence, the racist group reportedly used guns against the Kurds, leaving 7 persons wounded.

While police intervened the scene only in the early morning hours, tension remains high in the district. HDP Beypazarı branch co-chair Abdu Öner said although the situation is relatively calm in the district as of the morning hours, some Kurdish families are leaving the district as the threat continues.


A large group of racists gathered also in the city centre of Ankara last night and marched to Tuzluçayır district of the city known as a leftist settlement. The group attempted to enter the neighbourhoods where Kurdish, Alevi and leftist people live, intensifying their attacks mainly on Aktaş neighbourhood where many Kurdish people live, but faced a strong resistance by the people waging self-defence. The racist attacks were repulsed and the racist group had to leave the district as the youth held vigil in the district during the night against further attacks. In the meantime, police did not intervene the incidents, but rather accompanied the racist group from the city centre to Tuzluçayır.


In another development, a group of racists attacked on the HDP Keçiören office breaking the windows and taking the signboard of the party down. The group attempted to enter into the building until late hours, and left the scene after hanging a Turkish flag on the building.


Getting organised through social media, a group of racist assailants first attacked HDP building in Erdemli district of Mersin and then attacked the houses and shops of the Kurdish people in the district. Two vehicles owned by Kurdish citizens were set on fire in front of the police forces, while the group also attempted to burn three houses of Kurds. While the fire department and police did not intervene the scene, the racists further threatened the Kurdish people with killing them.

In the meantime, another racist group closed the highway between Mersin and Antalya and stopped the buses belonging to companies from Amed, Van and Mardin and held ID checks in the buses in an attempt to figure out the Kurdish people.

The attackers damaged the buses and also attacked the drivers. Some drivers who had to drive on the group to flee the scene were stopped by police, paving the way for further attacks on the buses.


HDP headquarters in the southern city of Antalya also became the target of Turkish racist groups. While five persons remained stuck in the building during the attack, the party members arriving at the scene were also attacked by the fascist mob and police forces. 10 people were wounded in the incidents, while one person, O. Çakmak was seriously injured by a knife from the back. Çakmak still remains in a life-threatening condition in the hospital where he was operated.


Racist groups in Konya also attacked the buildings of HDP and Ronahi –Der, a gathering point of Kurdish students in the city, while another group targeted the Kurdish workers in Ilgın district.

A group gathered in Konya bus station in the evening hours and marched to HDP building in an attempt to set the building on fire. The group broke the door to enter the building while HDP executives were inside. The group had to leave the scene after an intervention by police teams.

Another group directed at Ronahi-Der in Karatay district and set the building on fire before continuing to march in the neighbourhoods where mainly Kurdish people live.

In Ilgın district of Konya, racist groups targeted around 400-500 Kurdish citizens, who came to district from the Kurdish cities to work in the construction of buildings. The workers did not respond in order not to flame the incidents, but had to defend themselves as the attacks increased. Two Kurdish workers were reportedly injured in the attacks that lasted until late hours.

The workers demanded to be evacuated from the district following the incidents, but the district governor told that they could only be evacuated in 3-4 days. The workers said they did not have any life security as there were no measures taken by security forces and concerned authorities.


A group of around two thousand racists attacked the HDP building in Isparta, leaving big material damage inside. The group threw down the chairs inside from the windows and then set the office on fire. The group then escaped from the scene by chanting the slogan “Martyrs are immortal, our land is indivisible”.


In the western province of Muğla, a university student was attacked by a racist group with knieves, leaving him injured in many parts of his body. The student was taken to Fethiye Public Hospital after the attack.


A group of around 100-150 racist assailants attempted to burn down the HDP building in Malatya, entering the passage where the office of the party is located, and breaking down the iron doors before police forces standing there, who also accompanied the group in hanging Turkish flags on the building.


In another western city of Balıkesir, a group of racists entered the HDP building and first damaged the furniture inside, then threw down the chairs from the balcony and then set the office on fire. The group then dispersed from the scene, while the police did not intervene.


HDP offices in İzmir city center as well as ddistricts of Bergama, Dikili, Kemalpaşa and Buca were also targeted by attacks of racist mobs on the excuse of the Dağlıca incident which left 31 soldiers dead, including one staff lieutenant colonel, and 6 others wounded.

While the assailants were not intervened or stopped by police here either, groups raided HDP offices and burned flags of the party, while also rallying in Selçuk and Atatürk neighborhoods from which they were later repelled by the self-defense of Kurdish citizens.

Written by Andrew Coates

September 8, 2015 at 11:58 am

Call for International Convoy for the Opening of Humanitarian Corridor from Turkey to Kobane.

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 Call for Participation in an International Convoy for the Opening of Humanitarian Corridor from Turkey to Kobane

On 15the of September 2014, the Islamic State (ISIS) launched the first large scale attack against the canton of Kobanê in Syria. The Kurdish people living there, led by the People’s Protection Units of (YPG and YPJ) organized a historical war of resistance to defend themselves against the attack. The resistance of the men and women in Kobanê was, and remains, a fight for democracy, human rights, a common future, and equality of women in society.

Kobanê was liberated after 134 days of intense resistance, but the attacks from ISIS continue:
Between 25th and 27th June 2015, ISIS committed another massacre in Kobanê, where more than 200 civilians, most of them women and children, were brutally murdered.

Soon after, on the 20th of July 2015, a suicide bomber exploded in the cultural centre of Amara in Suruç in Turkey. The centre has been an important reference place for international solidarity with Kobanê, with large numbers of activists visiting and congregating there. The blast killed 32 people, and left over a 100 injured among the youth of the Young Socialist Organization, who wished to participate in the reconstruction of Kobanê.

Following this last attack, and while also maintaining a humanitarian blockade on Kobanê, Turkey declared its intention to join the International Coalition against ISIS. Instead, Turkey implemented a policy of ferocious attack on Kurdish positions that belonged to the YPG, the YPJ and the PKK, who have been the only forces effective against ISIS. Simultaneously, Turkey has launched a repressive campaign towards the supporters of the Turkish Left and pro-Kurdish opposition parties such as HDP, DBP and DTK. In the process Turkey has arrested more than 1,300 people, including a number of children.

Nevertheless, the resistance of Rojava continues, and Kobanê needs international support more than ever. Essential services such as water, electricity, food supplies and health care are still lacking or non-existent. It is also crucial that that the thousands of refugees return to their city safely, and support the reconstruction of the city in efforts towards normalisation of life for the traumatised community.

To date, Rojava and the region remain besieged by ISIS. The opening of the border with Turkey is essential in maintain a steady supply of aid and support for traumatised and war torn communities, including hundreds of thousands of refugees who lack access to basic needs and services. The population of Kobanê therefore urgently needs a humanitarian corridor to receive the necessary aid and relief in order to protect, supply and rebuild their city.

Further, after the liberation of Kobanê, anti-Isis Kurdish forces have captured strategic cities like Tal Abyad, Ain Issa, Sarrin, and Hasaka, and continue advancing toward liberating villages of the Raqqa region, the capital of ISIS in Syria. Each of these communities are in desperate need of international aid and services, which only a humanitarian corridor can address. Turkey’s continued prevention in allowing humanitarian aid to cross into Syria is in direct violation of human rights and international law.

The reconstruction of Kobanê, and humanitarian support for Rojava, is essential in cementing the only possible path for democratization of Syria and the entire area. In contrast, the objective of Turkey is to create a buffer zone between the cantons of Kobanê and Afrin, which will facilitate advancement of jihadist and other terrorist forces that endanger hundreds of thousands of innocent civilian lives. This current situation requires an extraordinary mobilization of international solidarity to support the Kurdish people.

Therefore, we invite individual activists, institutions, trade unions, political parties, NGOs, feminist groups, environmentalist groups, youth organisations, concerned citizens, and local and international authorities to participate in a large international caravan to promote peace, by making a public international call for the opening of a humanitarian corridor between Turkey and Syria. The Humanitarian Caravan will urge the UN to assure the opening of another border crossing, based on the implementation of the Resolution 2165 of 14 July 2014, article 2.

Tuesday, the 15th of September 2015, will mark the anniversary of the first ISIS attack on Kobanê. On this date we aim to stand in solidarity with the people of Kobanê and Rojava in the border town of Suruç (Pirsus) between the 15t-17th, to express our political support, and request the entry of a humanitarian convoy to Kobanê as a concrete act of international solidarity.

We hope to see as many international supporters on the 15th in Suruç.

Solidarity Committee
For further information and registration please contact : carovana15settembre@gmail.com

Facebook here.


ANKARA, Turkey – Recent Turkish airstrikes against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party in northern Iraq have killed 390 PKK members and injured 400, Turkey’s official Anadolu Agency on Sunday quoted unidentified security sources as saying.

“Turkish security sources are claiming to have killed a total of 390 militants from the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in a series of recent air strikes against rebel targets in northern Iraq,” the agency said.

“An anonymous security force source also told Anadolu Agency that 400 PKK insurgents were injured in the attacks,” the agency added.

Giving a partial list of targets, it said they included an air raid on the Bokriskan region of Iraq, in which a PKK battalion commander, identified as Sehit Dilan, was killed along with four other leaders, and 30 other militants were wounded.

More than 20 PKK members, including the head of its women’s branch – identified by her code name Gulten – were killed in an attack on the group’s Zergele camp in Iraqi Kurdistan’s Qandil mountains.

In Enze in northern Iraq, buildings used as PKK headquarters were destroyed and almost 30 female militants were killed, according to the sources quoted by AA.

It added that, “More than 20 security force personnel have been killed in attacks mostly attributed to the PKK and at least 1,300 people arrested in operations targeting various militant groups.”

Tensions in Turkey escalated after the PKK claimed responsibility for assassinating two policemen in Gaziantep last month, ending a shaky peace process with Ankara that began in 2013.

The latest hostilities have brought that peace process to a halt.

A fortnight ago, Turkish air force jets and artillery began a hail of attacks against the PKK, including airstrikes and artillery fire on PKK camps in the Kurdistan Region’s Qandil Mountains.


Written by Andrew Coates

August 10, 2015 at 11:42 am

As Turkey Attacks Kurds is an Islamist Alliance Being Prepared to Take Control of a Syrian “Safe Zone”.

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The Kurds Fought for Kobane’s Freedom from the Genociders: Now they Face New Threat.

Hürriyet Daily News states,

Around 260 members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) have been killed and hundreds more wounded in Ankara’s week-long campaign of air strikes against targets of the outlawed group inside Turkey and in northern Iraq, the semi-official Anadolu Agency said on Aug. 1.

Without citing its sources, Anadolu said that among those wounded was Nurettin Demirtaş, the brother of the co-leader of Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), Selahattin Demirtas.

Ankara has launched a two-pronged anti-terror offensive against Islamic State of Iraq and the LEvant (ISIL) jihadists in Syria and the outlawed PKK militants in northern Iraq and inside Turkey after a wave of attacks in the country.

Taz notes that the Turkish air strikes have hit the Syrian YPG (the heroic defenders of Kobane).

Die YPG erklärte, sie habe mit der Gewalt zwischen der Türkei und der PKK nichts zu tun. „Trotzdem sind unsere Einheiten im Visier des türkischen Militärs“

The YPG explains that they have nothing to do with the violence between the PKK and Turkey, “nevertheless, it’s our units which have been targeted by the Turkish military.

In Green Left Weekly  Tony Iltis  states,

Turkey has “joined the war against ISIS”, according to US politicians and the corporate media after a July 23 deal between the US and the Turkish government. The deal gives US war planes and drones access to Turkey’s Incirlik airbase from which to conduct air strikes in Syria and Iraq.

The reality is very different. The US and NATO have actually given a green light to Turkish air strikes against the most effective resistance to ISIS — the left-wing Kurdish-led forces.

They have also foreshadowed supporting Turkish plans to create a buffer zone occupied by Turkish soldiers or Islamist proxies in Rojava (Syrian Kurdistan). Turkey’s aim is to achieve what ISIS — also known as ISIL or IS — failed to do: prevent the spread of the liberated area of Rojava under the left-wing Kurdish-led Democratic Autonomous Administration.

Ignoring growing evidence of collusion between the Turkish state and ISIS, the US hailed the Turkish state’s recent crackdown on leftist and Kurdish activists as a “crackdown on terrorism”.

In fact, this response to Turkey’s repression of the forces actually in the front line against ISIS reveals the West’s “War on ISIS” as a lie.

Turkey’s Demirtas: ‘Erdogan Is Capable of Setting Country on Fire’

Interview Conducted By . Der Spiegel.

SPIEGEL: The Turkish government says it is fighting all “terrorists” equally. Why do you view their approach primarily as a campaign against Kurds?

Demirtas: Take, for instance, the number of people arrested in raids across Turkey recently. How many members of IS were among them? A few dozen? On the other hand, more than a thousand Kurds were arrested, particularly youths, on the grounds that they were PKK supporters. These figures say it all.

SPIEGEL: Were you expecting this to happen after the election?

Demirtas: I wouldn’t have put anything past Erdogan before the election, no matter how crazy. He is perfectly capable of setting the whole country on fire if it means maintaining his grip on power. We have been witnessing a worrying shift for some time now. The democracy that we so painstakingly achieved in Turkey is eroding. It is getting worse by the day.

Readers of French can read this important article on the site of Ensemble (the third largest group in the Front de gauche) on the details of the HDP’s political stand

Habur: Turkish epression against the families of victims of Daesh  Habur

Reports Solidarité Ouvrière.

A Habur, the border crossing between Turkey and Iraq, it has been six days that the families of thirteen YPG fighters killed in action against bands Daesh, have been waiting for the Turkish state to allow them to take back bodies of their relatives.

Yesterday, July 31, unable to wait any longer, families of fallen combatants have demonstrated for the bodies of their relatives  in order to organsie their funnerals. The Turkish forces of repression responded with tear gas and water cannons to the request from families already grieving the loss of loved ones.

Now we have this: Turkish warplanes kill civilians in Kurdish region’s Qandil

By RUDAW 7 hours ago
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Turkish fighter jets launched a fresh attack against Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) on Saturday, killing 10  civilians and injuring 11 others in the Qandil Mountains of the Kurdistan region, a Rudaw reporter at the scene said.

“We were all sleeping when the Turkish fighter jets bombarded our village,” Ismail Abdula Ghader, one of the injured civilians,said by phone this morning. The bombing targeted Zargali village in Rawanduz district, which is on the outskirt of the Qandil Mountains. The PKK was used the area as a stronghold for many years.

Ghader said the fighter jets dropped bombs over the civilians’ houses and killed six civilians instantly and injured seven others.

The Hurriyet Daily News reported Friday an intelligence source saying that 30 F-16 warplanes shelled 130 targets in the Qandil Mountains both inside the Turkey and in the Kurdistan region of Iraq.

The source also claimed that Turkish airstrikes have killed 190 PKK guerrillas and injured at least 300 others. The PKK has previously confirmed the death of four members because of the recent aerial attacks in Qandil.

Turkey claims its attacks are “in retaliation” for the killings of two Turkish police officers last week, for which the PKK claimed responsibility.

The latest conflict has possibly brought to a halt a peace agreement reached between Ankara and the PKK two years ago.

Since July 24, Turkish air force jets and artillery have kept up a wave of attacks against the PKK, including five rounds of airstrikes on Saturday that targeted the Qandil Mountains.

This is of great concern:

Libération (Hala Kodmani. from  Karkemish (Turkey) reports on Syria,

Au sein du regroupement salafiste, les jihadistes de Ahrar al-Sham tentent de paraître modérés pour bénéficier de l’appui des Américains et contrôler une future «zone protégée» dans le nord du pays.

Inside a regrouping of the Salifists, the Jihadists of Ahrar al-Sham are trying to appear moderate to gain Amjerican support and control a future “safe zone” in the North of the country.”


Written by Andrew Coates

August 1, 2015 at 4:44 pm

HDP (People’s Democratic Party, Turkey) : Erdoğan and his Party are Dragging Turkey into Civil War.

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Now is the Time to stand with our Kurdish and Turkish Sisters and Brothers.

HDP ( Peoples’ Democratic Party (Turkish: Halkların Demokratik Partisi (HDP), Kurdish: Partiya Demokratik a Gelan) official Declaration:


As of July 24, Turkey has been pushed to an uncertain process. Unfortunately, the AKP government, government agencies and the military have taken steps that end resolution and peace process and de facto ceasefire.

The political detentions involving our party and constituents and gradually spreading to all provinces; heavy bombardments to Kurdistan Federal Region; prohibition of “Great Peace Rally” to be held by Peace Bloc by very simple reasons; inhibitions to various press and communication facilities; police raids to the several civil society organizations, and particularly to Eğitim-Sen, are the first indicators that next days will be distressing for Turkey’s society.

As of July 24, the President and the AKP put into operation the concept of executing country’s governance over security policy through the military and the police. The President and the AKP have prepared this new period by the political and psychological ground they have created for days. They made the society ready for the conflicting environment by launching psychological operations through their own media.

Erdoğan and Davutoğlu’s Middle East policy covering recent years has created very heavy effects on the expectations of peace and democracy in the society. Erdoğan and Davutoğlu’s new policies after July 24 will lead to irreparable damages. This path will certainly destroy the possibilities of resolution and peace and would create serious social costs.

We emphasize once again strongly that Turkey needs peace and resolution. The solution of our social, historical and political problems is possible by improving mutual dialogue, negotiation and democracy. The extension and continuation of violence will never serve to permanent, democratic and egalitarian solution for any aspect of society.

Turkey is at the very important crossroads for its future. Erdoğan and Davutoğlu’s new policies and practices are not likely to reach a “good” conclusion. The future of Turkey’s society cannot be left to the operations of the military to be performed outside of the country and the police to be carried in the country under the coordination of the Intelligence Agency of Turkey.

The environment of violence created by Erdoğan, who has lost majority in the parliament and his dreams of governing Turkey as “one man” until his death being collapsed, has no limits. His aim is to realize the scenario of a re-election, which would give him back his old power. His plan of ruling the power alone until re-election by making a coalition impossible leads catastrophic situations in the country.

The plan is to ensure a single-party government through re-election by creating the impression of “a comprehensive fight against terrorism.” This plan is to burn the country in order to obtain absolute power. To bring the attacks against Kurdish society together with the fight against ISIL cannot be accepted.

Militaristic attacks and bombardments, political detentions and pressures should be stopped immediately. We have not any problems, which cannot solved by talking and negotiation.

We once again make a call to Turkey’s democracy and peace forces and every conscientious, responsible citizen. Today is not the day of keeping silent and waiting. We cannot just watch in concern the approaches of the AKP and the President who lead Turkey step by step towards a huge conflict by their pursued policies. Let’s strengthen together the struggle for peace, resolution, justice, democracy and negotiation. Every passing minute would make it more difficult to take steps.

Peoples’ Democratic Party

Central Executive Committee

Latest expression of solidarity with Victims of ISIS Atrocity to HDP:

Dear comrades,

On behalf of Ensemble! Mouvement pour une Alternative de Gauche Ecologique et Sociale (Together! Movement for a Left Ecological and Social Alternative), member of the Left Front (Front de gauche), we wish to express our solidarity after the terrible attack which took place this week in Suruç against comrades travelling to Kobanê in order to rebuild a town which has become a symbol.

Your international appeal on the occasion of the demonstration planned for 26 July in Istanbul must reach the wideest possible audience ; active solidarity is also necessary.

Faced with the horror of such an act, we are conscious that the Islamic State (IS) is following a clear objective : to break the heroic resistance of the Kurdish people in Rojava, as well as the solidarity movement which has followed. Like all serious observers of the situation, we know that IS has benefited from the goodwill and even the active complicity of the Turkish government in order to attain its goals. As a formidable adversary, IS does not hesitate to exploit the most reactionary elements in Turkey such as anti-Kurdish racism and the authoritarian tradition coming from the 1980 coup, as prolonged by Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

However, we are also aware of the admirable capacity for resistance of the Kurdish people over the last several decades, the mass democratic politicisation which was revealed by the Gezi movement in 2013, especially among young people, and the first signs of an awakening of the militant workers’ movement in Turkey. The remarkable result of the HDP in last June’s parliamentary elections, in extremely difficult conditions, is a remarkable signal.

By killing these comrades, the IS has shown what it fears the most : the common democratic combat of the peoples of the region – a combat which implies a respect for Kurdish reality. This was the cause which the comrades died for in Suruç, and that you are continuing to fight for.

We will do our best to support you by continuing to participate in the solidarity movement with the Kurdish people, with the resistance of Rojava and the democratic and class struggle in Turkey.

Although we cannot be with you this Sunday in Istanbul, we will show our solidarity at this Saturday’s demonstration in Paris calledto condemn the attack in Suruç.

In solidarity,

Clémentine Autain Myriam Martin

Jean-François Pélissier Marie-Pierre Toubhans

Spokespersons of Ensemble !

The Daily News reports:

The Turkish army’s ongoing military operations in Iraq and Syria to crack down on terrorists was engineered by the Justice and Development Party (AKP), whose objective to regain its one-party government is dragging Turkey into a “civil war,” the leader of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), Selahattin Demirtaş, has claimed.

“A temporary government with its temporary prime minister is dragging the country step-by-step into a civil war, regional war. Turkey has already been bogged down the Middle East quagmire because of wrong policies in Syria,” Demirtaş told reporters July 27, before a party meeting in Ankara.

Demirtaş’s criticisms came as the AKP-led government started a comprehensive military campaign against terror inside Turkey and through cross border operations in Iraq and Syria. The target in Iraq is the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and in Syria the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). The government strongly slammed the HDP for not condemning the PKK’s recent terror acts, with accusations that it relied on the terror organization.

For Demirtaş however, these operations were designed to let the AKP re-gain its one-party government that it lost in the June polls. “The AKP, as a ruling party already knee-deep in corruption, has begun wrathfully seeking ways to become the government once again,” he said, accusing the government of being responsible for the deaths caused by recent terror acts.

The real architect of this design was President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu was the practitioner, he argued. “They should better know that we have no palaces, no red plates, no millions of dollars to lose. We came penniless and we’ll go penniless. You better think about yourself. We have no fear of anything,” he said.

“These massive cross-border operations are the government’s efforts to save itself. These are operations of the palace. The palace has established its own state with a massive budget, cover operations and institutions,” he said.

Peace was just ‘a move ahead’

Demirtaş vowed his HDP would continue to work for the next elections to avoid the AKP stirring up more trouble in Turkey, stressing, “Peace was just a move ahead. There was only step left,” in reference to the halted Kurdish peace process.

In response to Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli’s call for the closure of the HDP on charges of links with the PKK, Demirtaş said, “Parties are opened and closed by the people. They should better give an account of their dirty history.”

Written by Andrew Coates

July 27, 2015 at 4:39 pm

Istanbul Peace Rally Against against Islamic State of Iraq and ISIS on 26th of July.

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A photo showing two young women, Ezgi Sadet and Büşra Çetin, lying side by side with Çetin holding Sadet’s hand tightly after the bombing in Suruç has become one of the symbols of the tragedy. Both women were thought to be dead, but Çetin survived. She was first treated in Şanlıurfa, from where she was sent to İstanbul for further treatment ( Story from Zaman)


The Islamic State brutally attacked the internationalist youth group who met in Suruç on July 20. They had gone there to support the struggle for great humanity being waged in Kobani, and help rebuild the city.

As a result of this attack, 32 people were killed and over 100 people were injured. Although Islamic State has been held responsible for this attack, Turkey’s AKP Government, by resisting the taking of effective measures to prevent Islamic State and other reactionary forces, bears the real responsibility for these massacres of civilians.

Being part of the progressive international community, we hold it to be a historical duty for us to develop further cooperation against Islamic State (ISIL) and similar organizations. The Peace Bloc, in which HDP takes place as well, will organize a big march in Istanbul on July 26 in order to act in solidarity with peoples who are yearning for freedom and peace everywhere in the world, and particularly in the Middle East, in order to give a powerful response to Islamic State barbarism.

In this context, we invite everyone who believes in democracy and freedom to support our struggle for humane values against barbarity and Islamic State by participating in this march on July 26 in Istanbul.

Co-Presidents of HDP

Date: 26.07.2015, 4:00 pm
Place: Şişhane, Beyoğlu/İstanbul

Co-chair of Turkey’s pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Selahattin Demirtas calls for a mass rally in Istanbul against the self-proclaimed Islamic State of Iraq and Sham(ISIS) after Suruc incident

Selahattin Demirtas, the co-chair of Turkey’s pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) has called people for a mass rally in Istanbul on Saturday against the self-proclaimed Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (ISIS) over the Suruc incident in which 32 people were killed.

“We shall organise an international ‘peace rally’ against ISIS in Istanbul” Demirtas said at his party’s board meeting on Tuesday.

The ‘peace rally’ is organised by Peace Blog, consisting of different civil society organisations, women organisations, political parties, labor and profession groups.

The rally is planned to begin on July 26 from the front of Turkish National Television (TRT) building in Sishane to Aksaray district of Istanbul at 16:00 (GTM)

32 people were killed on Monday when the massive explosion hit the garden of the Amara Culture Centre where members of the far-left pro-Kurdish Federation of Socialist Youth Associations (SGDF) gathered for a press meeting in Suruc district of Turkey’s southeastern province of Sanliurfa.

The suicide bombing suspect is confirmed to have links to ISIS on Wednesday, after he was identified with DNA test.

Chaos and violence hit Turkish streets in aftermath of Suruç

Protesters took to the streets and clashed with riot police throughout Turkey on Tuesday due to widespread public anger over the massacre of over 30 activists in a suicide bomb attack in the town of Suruç in the southeastern province Şanlıurfa on Monday.

Written by Andrew Coates

July 23, 2015 at 5:11 pm