News from the Revolution in Rojava and Wider Kurdistan
The AKP government opened the National Assembly with an agenda for war in Syria, says a report in today’s Özgür Gündem. At a time when Russia and the US have reached a consensus, the international community is debating alternatives to war in Syria, and the parliaments of the US, England and France have vetoed motions for war, the AKP government and PM Erdoğan have sought parliamentary approval for military action. One of the main goal assumed to be behind the motion is the prevention of administration in Rojava from achieving official recognition . On the eve of the democracy package, the motion before parliament proves that the AKP’s main agenda is not peace, but war.
Also supported by the MHP, the motion allows for the Turkish Armed Forces to send troops to Syria for one year.
Persistence in Invading Syria
The National Assembly convened Thursday. The Minister of National Defense, İsmet Yılmaz, stated that ever since a similar motion was passed last year on October 4th, 2012, Turkey has been put under increasing danger. Yılmaz said that this is an issue of “national security” for Turkey, and that a similar motion for Iraq is also on its way: “The Council of Ministers is about to sign it, I’ve signed it. Probably today or tomorrow…”
MHP parliamentarian Tuğrul Türkeş said that his party is in support of motion’ while Faruk Loğoğlu of the Republican People’s Party (CHP) said that the AKP has presented a motion for war while diplomatic efforts at the international level are speeding up. Loğoğlu said that the irresponsible Syrian policy of the government is bringing Turkey on the brink of a war, and that his party will veto it.
(Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) Grup Başkanvekili) İdris Baluken said, “The support for El Nusra groups has made Turkey a de facto party in the war. What we see today is an effort to make official a war that has already started unofficially.” Baluken continued, “We are seeing a failure of diplomacy with Iraq, Iran, Syria and Kurds that are living in a Kurdistan divided into four parts. In Syria there has been a shift from ”brother Asad“ to ”enemy Asad“. The Syrian policy is being shaped around an anatoginism against Kurds. The Al Qaeda groups attacking the Kurdish people have no legitimacy amongst the people, and they have been put in place by the AKP. The border corridors have opened up for these groups. Here we have a base of operations that is coordinating the civil war in Syria.”
Baluken remarked that the lands of the Directorate of Agricultural Enterprises (TİGEM) are being used by Al Qaeda and Al Nusra groups, while the Rojava Kurds are fighting without any support from global forces, and solely on their own will: “I want to state that the antagonistic policies against the Rojava Kurds, who have shown to all the people in the Middle East that there could be a third way, is unacceptable.” Baluken said that the embargo against Rojava will mark a shameful page in history, and that humanitarian aid should be let into the region.
Independent Parliamentarian from Istanbul Levent Tüzel also remarked that Turkey’s Syrian policy and the motion will negatively affect the resolution process in the Kurdish-Turkish conflict.
We Insist On Peace
While the Assembly was debating the motion, there were numerous protests against it on the streets. In Dîlok (Antep), supported by KESK, DİSK, İHD, ÖDP, BDP, HDP, ESP, EMEP and hundreds of citizens, the Anti-War Platform made a press release. The spokesperson for the Platform Ömer Faruk Koç said that they will not accept any kind of intervention in Syria. Calling for caution regarding Syria, Koç stated, “We will defend peace against war, the brotherhood of peoples against fratricide.” In Adana there were also protests against the motion. NGOs and representatives of political parties have announced, “We are calling for everyone to join us to stand for peace and against war everywhere.” In Adana a local spokesperson for KESK (a major Turkish trade union)’ Kamuran Karaca, also stated that AKP has been subcontractor of imperialist intervention in Syria for over two years, and that its warmongering is continuing.