(Our call for a joint struggle was declared in the meeting for democracy which was held on July 20th in Istanbul.)
The effects and consequences of deep political, economic, cultural and military crises in the Middle East point to that the region is going through a process of substantial change and transformation. These long-term crises, which started with the intervention into Iraq and whose character became even more evident in Syria, are causing harsh power struggles among global actors together with proxy wars.
While dictatorships and monolithic nationalist structures, unsustainable under the rich and colorful social dynamics of the Middle East, show resistance against societies’ demands for change, they also become weaker every day in the face of joint popular struggles and freedom dynamics. This situation also creates new opportunities and solution options for oppressed peoples.
Deeply experiencing the effects of all these developments in the Middle East in its political and social life, Turkey, instead of moving forward with peaceful solutions in the region, is strengthening the war bloc and spreading war due to the Erdoğan-AKP government’s ambition to become a regional power. The government seeks to maintain its rule through such policies. These irrational policies, however, affect the peoples of Turkey in an extremely negative manner.
The Erdoğan-AKP regime is institutionalizing its monist-absolutist government in the 15th year of its rule. Meanwhile, it does not refrain from implementing its war policies in Syria also within Turkey. The complete disregard shown to the Dolmabahçe Agreement, which was the result of İmralı negotiations that peoples of Turkey had embraced as a substantial hope for peace, and also [the Erdoğan-AKP government’s] not recognizing the results of 7 June 2015 elections which had raised the hope of peoples of Turkey for peace and democracy, and, consequently, the implementation of the Destruction Plan against the Kurdish people, have been the first steps dragging the country into the current volatile situation.
Having ended the efforts to pen a democratic Constitution and the search for a peaceful resolution of the Kurdish issue, the Erdoğan-AKP government has since allied with new centers of tutelage and created the suitable conditions for the mechanics of a coup d’etat to come into play. Immediately after the abortive July 15 coup, which Erdoğan defined as “a blessing from God,” the AKP-MHP coalition declared State of Emergency Rule on July 20, thereby putting into practice a civil political coup and initiating the process of institutionalizing fascism. The war alliance created with the partnership of Erdoğan and Bahçeli is a comprehensive assault on the aspirations of the peoples of Turkey for democracy, equality, and freedom.
Despite the government’s efforts to manipulate, distort and conceal the truth, having now completed its first year, the State of Emergency Regime has completely lost its legitimacy both at home and abroad.
Relying on the democratically illegitimate April 16 Constitutional Referendum, the AKP-MHP coalition has closed the door of negotiation and reconciliation to all opposition-democratic forces, and abolished democratic pluralistic life. Under these circumstances, it is clear that any search for “reconciliation” with the governing coalition will only help it to meet its need for consent [from the society] and to assist and legitimize its policies of oppression.
LET’S NOT STOP! LET’S MAKE THEM STOP!
LET’S NOT STOP! LET’S BRING CHANGE TOGETHER!
Today, fascism is becoming institutionalized in Turkey. The state is turning into a political party and a single person takes all kinds of decisions. The separation of powers has been abolished, and the parliament has been rendered dysfunctional through amendments of its internal regulations. The independence and impartiality of the judiciary no longer exists. Universal human rights and freedoms now are quite far from us. The government now rules the country by means of state of emergency rule and statutory decrees.
Democratic opposition and politics are under grave pressure and threat. Those who voice different opinions are sent to prisons; interventions in people’s lifestyles have increased; workers’ rights are being usurped. The freedom of information and communication is violated. There are increasing attempts to obstruct women’s struggle for freedom by force and violence. The grave assault on and destruction policies against Kurdish people continue; a cultural and political genocide is being committed.
The AKP seeks to maintain its rule through war, conflict, and an antagonizing rhetoric both at home and abroad. In order to deepen its tyranny, the AKP has been polarizing the society; turning neighbors against neighbors, siblings against siblings. We are living in a time when notions such as meeting, dialogue, negotiation, diplomacy, law, justice or human rights are suspended and clearly fascistic rules and policies dominate the political arena.
All these developments point to the single fact that democratization in political and social life in Turkey can be achieved only with the spirit of a joint struggle. It is an imperative duty for all opposition groups to broaden and strengthen the scope of political and social struggles against this regime.
The most fundamental goal of fascism is to destroy the spirit of resistance and the hope that we can win. Against this, we call upon all sectors of the society to join the struggle for justice, democracy, freedom, equality, and peace under the motto, “We will absolutely win”… Together we can win, we can advance existing struggles, we can take strong steps together to build a common future based on equality.
Despite increasing pressure, oppression and discrimination today, the energy of a democratic movement from below is slowly but surely rising. We call upon those who say, “This cannot continue like this, it shouldn’t, I object”, the victims of injustices and inequalities created by the AKP government, and those who aim at establishing a pluralistic social life based on equal coexistence of differences against enforcements of “uniformity”:
A joint struggle for democracy aiming at social justice for all will carry us to the future with hope. Our courage for struggle and determination to reveal the truth will build a common and equal future.
Our struggle for radical democracy to construct the New Life will be a step not only to abolish the existing oppressive regime but also to build a democratic republic that is the dream of this century.
With our understanding of participatory and pluralistic democracy that aims to abolish inequality in political participation at all levels,
With our understanding of a negotiating democracy that includes the recognition of all kinds of ethnic, religious and sexual identities,
And with our understanding of an egalitarian democracy that includes the struggle against poverty, income inequality, unemployment, regional disparities and exploitation, we call upon all sectors of the society to say stop to the government’s multiple attacks from all sides and join the struggle for urgent democratic demands.
LET’S NOT STOP! LET’S SAY STOP!
Democratic politics cannot be abolished.
LET’S SAY STOP TO
- The pressures on democratic politics and purges of politicians through [unlawful] criminal convictions,
- [The government’s] taking our co-chairs, MPs and co-mayors as hostages through arrests,
- The appointment of bureaucrats [“trustees”] to run [Kurdish] municipalities by ignoring people’s democratic will
- The stigmatization of those who criticize or oppose the government as enemies, traitors or terrorists.
Universal human rights and freedoms are inalienable.
LET’S SAY STOP TO
- Pressures and censorship targeting freedoms of association and expression,
- Arbitrary practices preventing the exercise of freedom of assembly and protest,
- Crimes against humanity in prisons, such as solitary confinement, torture and ill-treatment,
- Turning into targets with hate speech the people who have different thoughts, lifestyles and sexual orientations
- Violations of the right to life, which is sacred for everyone.
The rule of law and democratic universal legal principles cannot be violated.
LET’S SAY STOP TO
- The state of emergency and statutory decree regime whose practices remain unchecked,
- Purges, investigations, closure of associations, foundations and mass organizations by means of statutory decrees,
- Ban and closure of radio and TV stations, newspapers, journals, and digital and social media, and the arrest of journalists,
- The judiciary system that does not adhere to international democratic agreements and the prosecutions conducted on the orders of the government.
Peace cannot be abandoned.
LET’S SAY STOP TO
- The aggression of the ruling war bloc both at home and abroad; sending soldiers to the lands of neighboring peoples with a conquering mentality,
- The maintenance of solitary confinement on Mr. Abdullah Öcalan, who has a key role in the efforts to construct peace,
- The monist mentality that declares as enemies those who have different cultures, identities, beliefs, and mother tongues
- The otherization of peoples and beliefs, especially Kurdish people and the Alewite society,
- Destruction of political, historical and cultural values of Kurdish people as in the cases of Sur, Cizre, and Hasankeyf.
The social and economic rights of workers cannot be usurped.
LET’S SAY STOP TO
- Workplace murders and the prohibition or postponement of the right to strike,
- The usurpation of rights related to the mandatory Private Pension System, the Asset Fund, Severance Pay, and Unemployment Fund,
- Seasonal, temporary, immigrant workers and refugees being compelled to work under precarious conditions and without any job and health security,
- The usurpation of the right to quality and free education, and health and social security rights of retirees, the disabled, workers and all sectors of social labor.
Natural and cultural assets cannot be plundered.
LET’S SAY STOP TO,
- The destruction of historical and cultural memory and natural landscape,
- The abandonment of agricultural lands, olive groves, shores and drainage basins to the plundering of capital,
- The turning of cities into masses of concrete with the pretext of urban development, and displacement of people,
- Those who deny local people the right to speak and decide on matters regarding the use of natural resources below and above the ground.
The present and future of the youth cannot be darkened.
LET’S SAY STOP TO,
- The condemnation of youth to even more unemployment every passing day, and the destruction of their belief in a better future,
- All sorts of pressure on universities and the university administrations that suppress voices of their students,
- Forcing students to live in poor quality and unhealthy dorms,
- The use of drugs amongst the youth, which is being encouraged by the state and gangs.
Women’s gains cannot be abolished.
LET’S SAY STOP TO
- The exclusion of women from social, political and work life,
- Femicide and attacks on women’s identities, bodies, lives, and choice of dress,
- Unlimited exploitation of women’s labor in the workplace and at home,
- Impunity practices in cases of male violence and child molestation.
A new social contract is necessary.
- We can make a democratic, egalitarian, social, female liberationist, secular, ecologist, and pluralistic Constitution based on constitutional citizenship.
- We can prepare a new social contract wherein different cultures, identities, mother tongues and beliefs are constitutionally guaranteed.
- We can make education in mother tongue possible for everyone.
WE CALL FOR A JOINT STRUGGLE!
LET’S NOT STOP! LET’S BRING ABOUT CHANGE TOGETHER!
We can achieve a healthy, humane, conscientious, safe and peaceful society by discussing all of these. We can protect and promote democratic rights and freedoms and great humanitarian values by thinking and working hand in hand.
As the HDP, we are ready to take steps to this end and organize our joint march and struggle.
There is no way other than a joint struggle to achieve justice, a safe and humane life, respect, peace and equality, which are aspirations of a great majority of the people in the country. We are ready and determined to take the necessary steps, to organize a joint march and an incessant struggle.
We are giving start to a conscience and justice movement by coming together on the streets or in work places through meetings with the people, conferences, workshops, assemblies, and forums, participatory, inclusive and pluralistic platforms, and with civil disobedience.
We call on all sectors of the society:
Let’s not stop! Let’s stop fascism!
Let’s not stop! Let’s bring about change together!
WE WILL PREVAIL!
20 July 2018