Stop the brutal attacks by ISIS in Kobane

Bs8Bok5CQAAvU0UP rotest Friday 19 September 2014, 12-3pm at the Turkish Embassy
43 Belgrave Square, SW1X 8PA

Since 15 September the Islamic State has been carrying out the heaviest attacks yet on the Kurdish population of the Canton of Kobanê in Rojava (Western Kurdistan). Weapons delivered by Turkey are being used as well as weapons looted during the recent violent sweep through North Iraq. Representatives of Kobanê report that the weapons are being delivered from Turkey to the Islamic State by train. The AKP government is openly supporting these attacks by ISIS before the eyes of the world. Furthermore, an increased presence by the Turkish army is visible on the border with Kobanê.

Up to the time of writing (15.00 hours, 18.09.2014), 21 villages have had to be evacuated because of the attacks, and thousands of people have been forced to flee to the town centre of Kobanê.

If the attacks go on for too long, there is a danger that Kobanê will fall under the control of ISIS. The consequence would be the massacre of thousands of people, and hundreds of thousands would have to flee. At this moment an international alliance against ISIS is being discussed, and in this context we call on the world to break its silence about ISIS’s brutal attacks, and the international community must ensure that Turkey ends its open support of the Islamic State.

Salih Gedo, Foreign Minister of the Autonomous Self-Administration of Cizîrê (Jazireh)
Abdulkarim Omar, Speaker of the Autonomous Self-Administration of Cizîrê (Jazireh),

Press Statement 18.09.2014

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  1. Was Kurdish Exodus the result of a dirty deal?

    As 120,000 Kurdish refugees poured across the border between Northern Syria and Turkey yesterday, the Turkish army used water cannons and tear gas to prevent Kurdish volunteers going the other way to confront ISIS. Despite the attacks, thousands managed to cross over and join the resistance fighters in Kobane*.

    FIRAT, the Kurdish News Agency, alleges that a deal was struck between Turkey and the self-styled “Islamic State” to release the 49 Turkish hostages held in Mosul.

    It also published eye-witnesses accounts from Kobane canton which alleged that busloads of armed men had crossed the border “under Turkish military supervision” to join the ISIS assault on Kurdish villages in the area.

    Abdullah Öcalan, the leader of the Kurdistan Workers Party, who is being held in ?mral? prison near Istanbul, issued a statement to his lawyer on Monday, calling on “all Kurdish people to initiate mass mobilisation against the intensified war”.

    He pointed out that :
    “The Turkish state has made it publicly known that it has openly negotiated with the ISIS, while it has however failed to initiate a process of negotiation for the resolution of the deep-rooted Kurdish question.”

    Kurdish sources have made such allegations for some time, but they are starting to be picked up in the mainstream British Press. Patrick Cockburn’s piece in the “Independent on Sunday” being one example.

    Cockburn’s conclusion is that:-

    “… Isis has benefited from Turkey’s tolerant attitude towards the jihadi movements. As with other anti-Assad governments, Ankara has claimed that there is a difference between the “moderate” rebels of the Free Syrian Army and the al-Qaeda-type movements that does not really exist on the ground inside Syria.”

    It’s these so-called “moderate rebels” that the US and its coalition allies are hoping to train and use as their ground troops, as they begin to bomb Syrian targets. The bombing has commenced without any vote in the US Congress, without a UN resolution and without permission from the Syrian government.

    The US continues to work with Masoud Barzani, the leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party based in Irbil, where there are significant US investments in the oil industry. But there is no evidence that it’s prepared to recognise the PKK, which it still classifies as a Terrorist Organisation, or with its Syrian supporters in the Democratic Union Party and Peoples Protection Units.

    These are the forces that have borne the brunt of the fighting against ISIS and were mainly responsible for evacuating the Yazidis last month.

    A delegation from the German Left Party is travelling to the area to carry out observations and in particular will evaluate the support of Turkey for the ISIS gangs. Then they will report their observations to the United Nations and the German Federal Parliament.

    * (Kobanê is one of the three cantons in Rojava (Western Kurdistan/ Northern Syria), in which autonomy was declared in November 2013 under a democratic constitution, with the participation of all religious and ethnic groups.
    “The creation of grassroots-democratic self-governance structures in Rojava pose a democratic alternative for the entire Middle East, beyond nationalist, religious fundamentalist, patriarchal and capitalist foundations”)

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