Our Izmir MP Ertugrul Kürkçü gave yesterday a speech regarding Turkey’s Afrin assault on behalf of the United Sol Group at the winter session' current affairs debate titled "Turkish military intervention in Syria" in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE):
We are here today to understand what has turned Syria's always peaceful olive producing, majority Kurdish inhabited town of Afrin into a theater of war. Since 20 January Afrin is under Turkish Armed Forces incursion, an “effect based” military operation sarcastically dubbed as “Olive Branch”!
According to The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, in spite of official denials many civilians including children and elderly have lost their lives during air-raids and artillery shelling and thousands fled their homes.
Ankara says the incursion is in conformity with Article 51 of the UN Charter and UN General Assembly Resolutions 1624 (2005), 2170 (2014) ve 2178 (2014). Yet until this day Turkey has received not a single military attack as referred in the UN Charter by the Afrin inhabitants, nor the town has ever hosted a single DAESH unit -the target of the UN resolutions.
The YPG -the military object of the incursion- has born from among the peoples of Northern Syria striving for survival in the face of horrendous DAESH massacres. And following the legendary defense of the people of Kobane in 2014, they have become the hope for not only of their people but for all the world in defense of human dignity against DAESH across the globe.
I would like to recall your memories! In 2016 The Assembly awarded an Ezidi woman Nadya Murad the Vaclav Havel prize for the courage she displayed during the years of captivity in the hands of DAESH as a sex slave. Thousands of other Ezidi women were saved from slavery by the Kurdish Women's Defense Forces YPJ. The years 2014-15-16-17 when the DAESH was finally defeated these women were the role-model for young women across the globe. Nowhere in the world but Ankara they were labeled terrorists.
Now Ankara is targeting these women! Not because they are terrorists, but they are part of autonomous administrations who dare rule themselves in their native towns across Northern Syria. They are thus committing a bad-example for the Kurds of Turkey. What a crime. For human history this could only be a virtue -a people arises out of nothing and becomes a hope of humanity.
Lacking morale and reason in military terms, the Afrin expedition comes at a time when Turkey's ruling party's voter support for 2019 chain-elections is plummeting. The only understandable but unacceptable reason behind the expedition is its possible leverage for fanning nationalism inside Turkey and crushing the opposition under justifications of a war situation, daily arresting tens who call the government to stop war.
I wish the Assembly would spend more time to analyze the inner workings of the unresolved Kurdish question in Turkey and instead of closing their eyes to a war far away from home but call Turkey to raise the right to live in peace to the top of the agenda and release all detained who are in prison for having defended peace.
24 January 2018