NSW Supreme Court judge Lucy McCallum discharged the jury on December 6 after it failed to agree on a verdict in the trial of Kurdish journalist Renas Lelikan on “foreign fighter” charges under Australia’s draconian “anti-terrorism” laws.
Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK)
Turkish troops fired across the border on November 1, killing a six-year-old girl in the northern Syrian village of Til Findir.
The murder was part of a pattern of harassment by the Turkish army against the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria (DFNS). The DFNS is a liberated area administered by democratic local councils, with equal representation of men and women and the inclusion of ethnic and religious minorities.
On January 20, Turkey launched an invasion of Afrin, one of the three cantons that make up the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria (also known as Rojava), the site of a profound, Kurdish-led social revolution based on multi-ethnic participatory democracy and women’s liberation.
The invasion has killed dozens of civilians in an area that has welcomed hundreds of thousands of refugees from Syria’s conflict. Turkey’s actions would be impossible without at least passive acceptance from several great powers active in Syria. Cihad Hammy looks at the motivations for various major players.
The dark clouds of 21st-century fascism are once again hanging over the heads of the people of northern Syria. As if the inhabitants of the region often referred to as Rojava haven’t suffered enough over the course of the past 7 years of war, the Turkish state has come to the conclusion that the time is ripe to pick up the fallen, bloodied sword from the corpse that is Islamic State.
Together with Salafist mercenaries carrying flags of the Syrian ‘rebels’ – one of the many components of what at one historical juncture seemingly all so long ago was a cohesive ‘Free Syrian Army’ – Erdogan’s regime vows a ‘swift operation’ to destroy ‘terrorism’ in Afrin.
The July 15 coup attempt was a nightmare. Kurds remember the terrible army coups in Turkey’s past. After the coups, Kurdish people were jailed, killed and tortured.
Kurds are against military coups. By nightfall on July 15, the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) had immediately condemned the coup attempt.
Kurds thought that after the coup attempt, there may be a return to the peace process.
The reasons behind this were:
Cemil Bayık, the co-chair of the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK, the umbrella organisation of the Kurdish liberation movement), spoke to Firat News Agency about recent developments in Turkey.
Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) Executive Committee Member Duran Kalkan paid tribute to Fidel Castro and the Cuban revolution at the PKK’s 38th anniversary celebrations in Medya Defence Zones, Firat News Agency reported on November 28.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced the start of an assault to recapture Mosul, the most important Iraqi city held by ISIS, on October 16.
The assault is spearheaded by the Iraqi army and the peshmerga, the armed forces of the Kurdistan Regional Government in northern Iraq. It also includes the Popular Mobilisation Units (PMU), an umbrella group of militia groups loyal to the Iraqi government and based in Iraq’s Shi’a Arab communities, and some other Iraqi militias.
Hunger strikers begin their fast for Öcalan in Diyarbakır on September 5.
A hunger strike was launched in Turkey’s Kurdish capital Diyarbakır on September 5 by politicians and activists demanding a meeting with jailed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Öcalan.
Sırrı Süreyya Önder and Selahattin Demirtaş. Photo: Kurdishinfo.com.
Left-wing opposition Peoples Democratic Party (HDP) co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş and HDP Ankara MP and Imralı Delegation Spokesperson Sırrı Süreyya Önder have both been indicted and threatened with five years imprisonment after the removal of their parliamentary immunity.