Kurdistan Bloggers Union Who represents Kurds in Turkey ? - Kurdistan Bloggers Union

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Sunday, December 12, 2004 

Who represents Kurds in Turkey ?

Since a week, a petition coordinated by the Kurdish Institute of Paris has been published in the French newspaper Le Monde and in the Herald Tribune : What do Kurds in Turkey want ? 200 Kurdish personnalities call the European Union. (Good idea, later is better than never to ask the advice of the most concerned people), with rather consensual and reasonable claims, conciliating "hard line" and "diplomats", diaspora and Kurds stayed in the country (I have not the Herald Tribune with me so I translated the French paper :

  • a new and democratic Constitution, recognizing the existence of Kurds, guaranteeing the right to have a public educational system, to have media in their own language and the right to found associations, institutions and parties in the aim to promote the free expression of their culture and their political wishes ;

  • a general political amnesty in order to found a climate of confidence and reconciliation and to begin a new chapter and let violence and armed conflicts ;

  • Starting, with the support of Europe a vast program of economic development for the Kurdish area, including especially the rebuilding of more than 3 400 Kurdish villages distroyed in 90s and inciting measurements for the return to their home of the three million displaced Kurds.

  • The requirements to the Turkish candidature in EU are in fact summed up in this paragraph :

    To integrate this family of democracies, Turkey must itself become a real democracy, respectful of its cultural diversity and its political pluralism. It must especially guarantee to its Kurdish citizens some rights comparables with Basques, Catalans, Scottish, Lapps, South-Tyroleans or Walloons' rights in European democratic countries, or the same rights that Turkey claims for Turks in Cyprus.

    The text is signed by Kurds from Turkey as from outside, (names here), and among them, Leyla Zana.


    As we could expect, Turkish reaction was furious : ministers, political leaders, newspapers and intellectuals did fly into a rage with usual accusations of separatism, plot, etc. ; Erdogan stated that former DEP deputies and all these Kurdish intellectuals want to sabotage Turkish candidature with foreign supports...

    So, for the Kurds who signed it in Turkey, more or less willingly, things are a bit difficult...

    As for Leyla Zana and his small group, they retracted immediately and broke distinctly with the else petitioners, with an excuse that we reproduce as it has been given : She was not awared, she did not know the content of the text, the proof it is that she did not read it.

    Other petitioners stingingly retorted : "All the people who signed this appeal have red it and knew its content."

    While former DEP say : "May be a few number of Kurds wish that the resolution of the Kurdish Question in Turkey take for model Spania, Ireland or Italy, and may be they ask for Turkey that Kurds in Turkey have the same rights than Turks in Cyprus, but the majority of Kurds in Tukey, that we represent, don't want presently a federalism or an autonomy in such conditions."

    We have to object here that the MPs of the former DEP are not the legal representatives of Kurds in Turkey, no more than DEHAP party, which has seriously failed during the last elections (the reasons of this failure are explained here). And sadly, if we consider only the result of polls, AKP is paradoxically the legal representative of these Kurds, that is too bad for the balance of negociations...

    But, in the desire to prove the good will of the DEP/DEHAP after a such scandal, this party organized today in Diyarbakir a demonstration with 50.000 Kurds, claiming that Turkey should be accepted in EU. Hatip Dicle, one of the MP imprisonned with Leyla Zana, has even stated :" "EU should give an unconditional date to Turkey and begins to negociate its adhesion".

    In an absolute contradiction with the "200 representatives of Kurds in Turkey" 's appeal...

    At the end, we don't know what Kurds in Turkey want... and who represent them in reality... Or perhaps have they TOO MUCH self-proclaimed representatives ?

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