Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Outspoken advocate for rights of Kurdish people dies at 79




CNN
According to CNN, Safire was an outspoken advocate of the plight of Iraq's Kurdish population.
William Safire, a onetime speechwriter for President Nixon who became a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for The New York Times, has died at age 79, the newspaper announced Sunday.

According to CNN, he was an outspoken advocate of the plight of Iraq's Kurdish population. He sharply criticized U.S. support for Iraqi strongman Saddam Hussein in the 1980s, when Hussein used poison gas to put down a Kurdish revolt, and he strongly supported the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, writing that "nobody came out of this war more nobly" than the Kurds.

The new Iraqi Kurdistan premier Barham Salih praised Safire on Twitter. "Bill Safire passed away today; advocate for rights of Kurdish people and the cause of democracy in Iraq. He spoke for us at a time when few would!"

Safire joined the Times as a columnist in 1973. In addition to his conservative news columns, which he wrote until 2005, he wrote a language column for the paper's Sunday magazine from 1979 until shortly before his death.

He won the Pulitzer Prize for commentary in 1978. In 2006, President George W. Bush awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest U.S. civilian honor.

Safire had suffered from pancreatic cancer and died Sunday at a hospice in Rockville, Maryland, the newspaper reported.

Born in New York in 1929, Safire began his career as a reporter for newspapers, television and radio stations after dropping out of Syracuse University. After becoming a public relations executive in the late 1950s, he was credited with putting together the 1959 "kitchen debate" between then-Vice President Richard Nixon and Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev at that year's American National Exhibition in Moscow.

Safire was the publicist for a builder at the time.

"What I was publicizing was the typical American house," he recounted during a conference at George Washington University in July. "It was my kitchen."

The next year, he went to work for Nixon's first, unsuccessful presidential bid. He rejoined the Nixon team in 1968, when the Republican eventually won the White House, and became one of the administration's top speechwriters.

Perhaps his best-known line in that job was Vice President Spiro Agnew's denunciation of journalists as "nattering nabobs of negativism." But Safire left the administration to join that nattering club in 1973, when he left the Nixon administration to join the Times.

His often-pugnacious voice -- he once denounced then-first lady Hillary Clinton as a "congenital liar" -- held down the right flank of the Times' op-ed page for more than three decades. He won his Pulitzer in 1978 for columns on the travails surrounding Bert Lance, who as President Carter's budget director in 1977 resigned amid allegations of bank fraud. Lance was acquitted by a federal jury in 1980.

Safire also wrote four novels, several collections of columns and a political dictionary that was first published in 1968. A new edition came out in 2008.

He is survived by his wife, Helene, two children and one grandchild.

Kuwait will open first Arab consulate in Kurdistan


By Mariwan Faydullah Salihi


Erbil - Kuwait is prepared to open a consulate in Erbil, Kurdistan Region of Iraq as the first Arab country, says a Kuwaiti Parliamentarian exclusively to Rudaw.

“We have talked to our Foreign Ministry and they decided to open a Kuwaiti consulate in Erbil within two or three months,” says Waleed Al-Tabtabai during his visit to Kurdistan Region.

The popular Kuwaiti MP further adds: “The main reasons for the opening of the consulate is to promote trade, political, cultural, tourism and sports relations between the State of Kuwait and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

Kuwait’s ambassador to Iraq, Ali Al-Mamoun also supports the idea of deepening the relations between Kuwait and Kurdistan. “We will soon open a direct aviation link between Kuwait and Erbil to ease transportation between both cities,” he tells Rudaw exclusively.

The visit of the Kuwaiti delegation to Erbil comes for the participation of Kuwait Sports Club against FC Erbil for the quarter-final second-leg of Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup 2009. (Photo: Rudaw, by Mariwan Salihi)



Source: Rudaw

Kurdish opposition: PUK wants to blackmail us



By Wladimir van Wilgenburg

Delft - Gorran members Safin Mala Qara and Jamal Hama Karim accuse in an exclusive interview with Rudaw, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) of blackmail. They say the PUK is trying to blame their mistakes in the Sulemani province on Gorran, after the revelation of corruption scandals in Halabja, Chamchamal and Sulemani.

“This is an important goal: [PUK] they are trying to blame their failures on the provincial council and mayor, which mostly consist of Gorran supporters. They are trying to put the blame on Gorran and want to give Gorran a bad image,” says Gorran Erbil-representative Safin Mala Qara.

According to the Gorran EU representative Jamal Hama Karim the Change list is against all types of corruption, even if it’s from their own party. “We think there is a clear political purpose of this. We are against every kind of corruption.” He added: “Corruption should be combated top down, not from bottom up. Why nothing happens with the KRG vice premier Omar Fattah who stole 18 million dollar?”

Kurdistani Nwe daily newspaper, a mouthpiece of PUK, reported that the Suleimaniya governor, the Suleimaniya provincial council, and the Halabja mayor are Goran supporters, and during the last election campaign they spent government money to campaign for Goran.

Both the Suleimaniya governorate, governor Dana Ahmed Majeed and the Halabja mayor Fuad Saleh are accused of embezzling a lot of money (Photo: Rudaw).

Source: Rudaw

GOLDEN WARRIOR by HİLAL


Submitted by Tsiatsan on Wednesday, September 30 2009
löjl
güncel Kurdish Info 30.09.2009-A new organization has been founded in Kurdistan under the name of“Warriors of the Golden Crescent”. The organization has stated that the reason for its establishment is to protect Kurdistan’s history, nature and culture against any planned attack. In a statement the organization declared that Kurdistan is not alone, and any attack against its history, culture or nature will not go unanswered.
The statement also said that the Turkish state is not satisfied by bombing Kurdistan’s mountains, forests, plains, plateaus and is now planning to immerse parts of this land under water. It is now certain that the aim of this special war is to destroy the nature and history of Kurdistan.

The first product of this policy has been implemented against the historical city of Zeugma – a 2,300 year old city on the banks of Euphrates – buried under water as a result of a dam built in Birecik. Throughout thousands of years this city has held strong against numerous wars and natural disasters only to be destroyed by merciless policies. Many other dams are being planned across Kurdistan in cities such as Cizre, Dersim, Wan, Cewlik and Batman. By declaring itself as the government of the special war, the AKP is in a vicious alliance with the Army General Staff in implementing these dirty policies.

The Warriors of the Golden Crescent’s statement continued: “We as the Warriors of the Golden Crescent hereby declare that our war against these attacks has started. We believe that this is what our ancestors expect of us. Our organization has been formed to fight against all attacks against the nature, history and culture of Kurdistan. In accordance with our view we believe that the HPG (the People’s Defence Forces) – who we have previously been fighting for – has not established a hard enough line against these types of attacks. These attacks are part of a bigger strategy to annihilate the Kurdish people and cannot be thwarted through certain diplomatic measures. We state that without an answer of the same level nothing will change. We therefore criticize all other organizations who claim to fight for the freedom of the Kurdish people. Our organization will aim to be the sharpest sword of the Kurdish people in the war against these attacks, and will not continue the weakness of the HPG in this sense. Before we raise our sword we would like to warn all sections involved.”

MSF : "Media Uses Women to Deviate Attention from Kurdish Question"

Submitted by Tsiatsan on Tuesday, September 29 2009
löjl
güncel Erol ÖNDEROĞLU- In the "Media and Women" panel discussion of the Mesopotamia Social Forum Turkish journalists and authors evaluated the role of women in the mass media regarding the Kurdish question. As part of this week's meeting of the Mesopotamia Social Forum (MSF) publication director of the daily Günlük newspaper Filiz Koçaeli summarized her point of view in the "Media and Women" panel discussion. Koçaeli said that the mass media is using the women MPs of the pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party (DTP) to direct the Kurdish question.
Kocaeli sees real potential to change politics in Turkey by the involvement of Kurdish women in the political agenda. As members of an oppressed part of society the women work on revealing gender based discrimination and on putting forward a common faith for the future.

Women are treated as objects or tools of deviation by the media
Gün TV program director E. Zuhal Bıkkım, leading through the discussion, said that Kurdish women are targeted by the media generating new sexist gender roles and othering them. Hürriyet newspaper editor Ertuğrul Özkök reminded: "Honor killings must be solved before the Kurdish question".

Author Esra Çiftçi indicated that the Kurdish women are reflected in the mass media by reports somewhere in the middle of the newspapers about deaths from honor killings, about exposure to violence or becoming victims whereas on the back cover they are depicted as sexual objects. Çiftçi argued that women are not presented in the democratic and progressive press, describing this fact as a "serious problem".

The Mesopotamia Social Forum
The MFS brought together organizations and movements from the Middle East and several other countries in the city of Diyarbakır in the southeast of Turkey from 26-29 September 2009.

The forum was a platform for discussion topics as diverse as problems of the people in the Middle East, conflicts in Latin America, the solution to the Kurdish question, the struggle in Palestine, women's liberation, alternative global administrations, youth movement, water and energy management, ecology, prisons, urban transformation of the labor movement, freedom of expression and Alevi problems.

Coordinator Sırrı Süreyya Önder summarized the aim of the meeting as follows: "Thousands of people from the region of Mesopotamia and from different corners of the world meet at the Mesopotamia Social Forum to share their experiences in the struggle for a different world, a different Middle East, a different Mesopotamia. We are trying to unite our efforts in our seminars, workshops, exhibitions, concerts and discussions". (EÖ/VK)

Source: www.kurdish-info.eu

Amnesty International Report 2009: The state of the world’s human rights


http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_3Cj0lK1aWGw/Sh6clYBLkbI/AAAAAAAAA30/IFLSQsEGKHs/s400/amnesty-international+logo.png

The Amnesty International Report 2009 documents the state of human rights during 2008, in 157 countries and territories around the world. It reveals the systemic discrimination and insecurity that prevent progress in law from becoming a reality on the ground. Crucially, this report reveals a world where, time-andagain, states pick and choose the rights they are willing to uphold, and those they would rather suppress. The report opens with five regional overviews that highlight the key events and trends that dominated the human rights agenda in each region in 2008. The heart of the book is a country-by-country survey of human rights, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. Each entry begins with a summary of the human rights situation in the country. Amnesty International’s concerns on various issues are then set out, highlighting individual cases where appropriate. If an issue is not covered in a country entry, this should not be taken as a statement by Amnesty International that abuses within this category did not occur. Nor can the absence of an entry on a particular country or territory be taken to imply that no human rights abuses of concern to Amnesty International took place there during 2008. In particular, the length of individual entries cannot be used as the basis for a comparison of the extent and depth of Amnesty International’s concerns.

You may download the AI report here - over 400 pages:

Amnesty International Report 2009

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Turkish ‘Madonna’ investigated for spreading hate


22-09-2009

Istanbul – The famous Turkish artist Hülya Avşar is under investigation by the District Attorney’s Office for allegedly inciting hate and enmity in an interview. In the interview with Milliyet, Avşar said hat Kurds and Turks should be equal.



Singer Avşar ridiculed the investigation. “They have closed the doors to a solution. I am 100% Turkish, but this doesn’t mean that we should ignore Kurds and oppress them,” she said in an interview with the Turkish daily Milliyet.

The chairman of the Union of Modern Journalists (ÇGD) Ahmet Abakay criticized the decision of the District Attorney and said the state wants to frighten people to speak out on Kurdish rights. “You cannot say everything what you think in Turkey.”



Sunday a court case was started against Milliyet reporters Namık Durukan and Hassan Çakkalkurt for making ‘terrorist propaganda’ after reporting about the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). “Don’t write about these subjects,” the prosecutor said to the journalists, according to Abakay (Photo: Rudaw).

Source: Rudaw

Turkish Racist Football Thugs Chant Against Football Team from Kurdistan.

A Diyarbakirspor supporter tries to protect his son from racist Turkish fascists firing missiles and chanting Turkish nationalist slogans against Kurds. This is a very depressing thing and shows that if the Turkish government do not respond quickly to Abdullah Ocalan and the PKK's peace proposals, Turkey could very easily slip into a civil war. Read full story here and here.

Source: Hevallo

Even Turkish Army Casualites are Kurds!

Kurds Are Forced into the Front Line by the Turkish State to Fight their Kurdish Brothers and Sisters.


An interesting piece of statistical information for you from the blogger, 'Children of the Sun'.


Turkish Ministry of Defence has published the statistics of dead security forces. Oral Çalışlar recently wrote an article about it. Of course, the data wasn't published widely in Turkish media. The data presents which cities the dead security forces are from. It turns out that in terms of highest losses, six of the top ten cities are Kurdish. The security forces from Kurdish cities (Kurds) are sent to the front lines to fight the PKK. The fascist regime's policy of pitting Kurds against Kurds continues regardless. A Kurd is worthless to the state even if he sides with the state. Here is the data for top ten cities:


City
Number of Dead Security Forces from the City
City Population (2007 census)

1. Şırnak (Şirnex)
302
416,001

2. İstanbul
284
12,573,836

3. Hakkâri (Colemerg)
264
246,469

4. Ankara
260
4,466,756

5. Diyarbakır (Amed)
233
1,460,714

6. Konya
203
1,959,082

7. Mardin (Mêrdîn)
199
745,778

8. Sivas (Sêwas)
198
638,464

9. Adana
186
2,006,650

10. Van (Wan)
177
979,671

Total
2,306
25,493,421

Total Number
of Killed Security Forces from the Kurdish
Cities in top 10 and sum of their populations:
1,373
4,487,097

Total
Number of Killed Security Forces from Non-Kurdish Cities in top 10 and sum of their populations:
933
21,006,324

Percentage of Losses from Kurdish Cities (in top 10)
59.54


For the top-10 cities which gave the highest loss of security forces, Kurds make up 60% of losses. I actually wouldn't be surprised if it was higher because we know there are millions of Kurds living in cities like Istanbul and Adana. Unfortunately the identity of security forces originating from those cities are not available to the man on the street but I am sure TSK takes their identities into considerations before deciding where to send those people. After all pitting Kurds against Kurds is one skill the fascist regime has mastered.

Hevallo adds: Which all goes to show why Kurdish men should avoid conscription of the enemy's army!

Source: Hevallo

Monday, September 28, 2009

Longing for end to 'dirty' war in Turkey

xxx

BBC

Recently there has been talk of finding a solution to Turkey's long running war with the Kurdish separatist group the PKK, and negotiations are said to be going on behind the scenes to bring about peace. Promising signs for some - too late for others.

"We need to stop this dirty war. Don't let our children die anymore," Sakine Arat tells me. She, as much as anyone, knows the cost of this war.

The first time I saw Mrs Arat, a Kurdish woman in her 70s, was on a television programme.

"Is there any other pain more profound than the loss of one's child?" she lamented as I watched her describe how she had lost three sons during the 25-year conflict.

When I went to meet Mrs Arat, she told me about the devastating impact the struggle has had on her.

Read More


Kurdish Doctor Issues Statement on Turkish Genocide of Assyrians

AINA

Siirt, Turkey - Dr. Ekrem Bilek, the president of the Medical Society of the city of Siirt, located in south-east Turkey, and who is a Kurd, has issued a statement on the Turkish genocide of Assyrians, Greeks and Armenians in World War One. The genocide, called Seyfo in Assyrian, began on April 24, 1915 and over the course of the next three years claimed 750,000 Assyrians (75%), 500,000 Greeks and 1.5 million Armenians. The genocide was targeted at the three main Christian groups of the Ottoman Empire.



Dr. Bilek's statement follows:



In order for past sorrows and tribulations not to be repeated again and for those with inter-cultural differences to live together in a harmonious way, one must directly confront his or her own history. Normally, the first degree of responsibility for the crimes that are committed and that continue to be committed against humanity falls upon political authorities and powers. However, to remain silent about them is to indirectly become a party to the same crimes.



Anyone who sides with humanitarian values, especially intellectuals and democrats, have the responsibility to confront, condemn and punish these crimes. Fulfilling this responsibility by prosecuting the culprits will contribute to inter-faith dialogue and for cultures to live together in peace.



Any leading action taken by individuals, even though it may be considered a small step, will enable political powers and authorities to confront their past as well as give hope for past grievances to be cleared away. Most importantly such actions will prevent further tragedies from taking place and will contribute towards peace prevailing amongst peoples. In light of this consideration and the humanitarian action taken by Mr Berzan Boti and Mr Sabri Atman, I think similarly, this will mark the beginning of the dialogue between the Kurdish and Assyrian peoples.



While wholeheartedly supporting this humanitarian action which took place late last year, as responsibility falls upon any intellectual, similarly, I would like to point out that I impose upon myself to build the first house for the first family that will return to its land. I hope that this additional small step taken by myself will contribute further towards the peace, brotherhood and tolerance of differences and towards individuals living together freely in peace.

Dr. Ekrem Bilek

President, Siirt Medical Society

Source: www.kurdishaspect.com

The reason why Iran’s Green Movement has no support in Kurdistan

By Loghman H. Ahmedi

Supporters of Iran’s Green Movement have, during the past couple of months, complained that our party, the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI), is preventing the Kurdish people as well as other nations in Iran, such as the Baluchs and the Arabs, from joining this movement.

Individuals and groups that support the Green Movement have asked the governments and political parties of other countries and friends and allies of our party around the world to put pressure on us to urge the Kurdish people to take part in this movement.

Hence, explaining the reasons why our party and our people have not expressed support for the Green Movement is in order.

Our party has since its establishment 64 years ago, and especially during the past 30 years, always reached out to all progressive movements that advocate democracy in Iran. However, since the leaders of the Green Movement have not expressed any explicit support for democracy or any willingness to address, let alone accommodate, the national rights that our people demand, naturally, we cannot show any support for this movement.

The fact that the leaders of the Green Movement take every opportunity to pledge their loyalty to the Islamic Republic’s undemocratic constitution and its theocratic system of governance and, furthermore, refuse to even take any of the Kurdish nation’s demands into consideration, explains why it has no support in Iranian Kurdistan.

As long as this movement does not explicitly and unequivocally express its support for democracy and the rights of Iran’s oppressed nations, it cannot expect any support in Iranian Kurdistan.

Meaningful and real change in Iran towards democracy can only be possible if Iran’s political movements jointly reach a consensus on the need for the abolishment of the current theocratic system of government and its replacement with a multinational federal democracy.

The various nations of Iran have legitimate concerns about the positions of the leaders of the Green Movement. Furthermore, no one should forget that all of the leaders of the Green Movement have in different ways taken active part in the oppression of the Kurdish people during the past 30 years.

The fact that supporters of the Green Movement have set out to persuade our party to support this movement is testament of the fact that no movement in Iran will achieve its goals without the participation of the Kurdish people as well as other nations in Iran.

Since they have realized this fact, it is also high time for them to express their support for democracy and the rights of Iran’s oppressed nations.

If support for democracy and national rights is absent from the Green Movements agenda it will only be a movement for some Iranians rather than all Iranians. The political formula for a movement with a true popular basis in all of Iran is a multinational federal democracy.

Source: Kurdishaspect.com

Şivan Perwer sings, bad boys rap



Berlin - The folk singer Şivan Perwer recorded his second ‘rap’ song with Kurdish-German rap stars. This time Perwer sings together with the Kurdish rappers Bero Bass and Xatar about the suffering of the Kurdish people [Video clip].

The rapper Xatar is known for his aggressive raps and the Kurdish rapper Bero Bass is accused of attempted murder and is in prison.

Despite of this, the new album of Bero Bass is in the German stores and he released his first single “Blick Richtung”. The song is dedicated to all the Kurds who have suffered.

Earlier before Şivan recorded the song “City falcon” (Stadtfalke”) with the famous rapper Azad. Azad also sung at the biggest European Kurdish festival in Gelchenkirchen (Photo: Rudaw).

Source: Rudaw




NGO: Unexpected high female genital mutilation rates in Kurdistan


By Wladimir van Wilgenburg


Leiden - Researcher Arvid Vormann of the German NGO WADI working in Iraqi Kurdistan says research shows that female genital mutilation (FGM) of women in Iraqi Kurdistan is higher then they expected. Iraqi Kurds are suspicious about the high rates, but say they want the practice to be dealt with.

72,7% of the women are genitally mutilated in the areas of Arbil, Suleymaniyah and Germiyan and Kirkuk,” Arvid Vormann wrote her blog. “In Arbil governorate the rate is comparatively low (63%), in Suleymaniyah it is as high as 77,9% and in Garmyan it reaches even 81,2%.”

Despite of these high rates, Vormann writes that women have seem to have a great chance to escape Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), then women had some decades ago. “The rate among women younger than 20 years old is 57% whereas the rate among women between 50 and 59 is nearly 85%. In Arbil, even among women above 80 years the rate is “only” 80%, but in Germiyan from 60 years onwards it is 100%.”

Vormann notes that she sees a sharp decline in the mutilation rate of about 20% among women younger than 20 years old in Suleymaniyah and Germiyan “This is indicating a positive trend. In Arbil, this positive trend seems to have taken place earlier. Nowadays, considering these numbers, the rate in Arbil even seems to be on the rise again.”

On Kurdish discussion forums a lot of Kurds are surprised about the high rates and argue that the numbers are too high. “I have never heard from this practice”. For instance, Alan Daudey (28) a Kurdish student from Holland, says that the rates are too high. “This happens in maybe rural regions, but not in the cities. Perhaps they have to exaggerate the numbers a little bit, otherwise nothing happens.”

Swedish sociologist Minoo Alinia notes that the rates are ‘too high off course’. “Unfortunately there are always people who deny it, but there are many other who admit that the problem exists. For example a woman who used to work as a teacher told me in an interview that almost all of the students (females) in her school were exposed to FGM.” But Alinia was hopeful that the practice will fade away. “There is hope because of the fact that it is decreasing even if it is still very high. I have seen also other reports in newspapers that indicate this progress.”

Source: Rudaw

September. Abdullah Ocalan's Most Recent Prison Visit.

Kurdish Info 27.09.2009-Kurdish Leader Abdullah Öcalan has had his weekly meeting with his solicitors. Assessing the recent situation, Öcalan said, ‘I’ve presented my views for a solution. There is not much more I can do. It is in the Road Map: I will still do everything I can for a solution, but these conditions won’t permit me to do much more. It is physically impossible.

The Turkish state, the DTP and the PKK are putting all the responsibility on to my shoulders. This is unrealistic.I don’t even have freedom of movement here. You are not able to improve conditions here but you burden me with responsibility. You are not going to give me the means to solve this problem but still heap responsibility on to me. This is not the right way to do things,’ he said.

Öcalan responds to the Chief of General Staff
Responding to General Başbuğ’s ‘there are lords of terror and politics’ comment, Öcalan said, ‘Başbuğ has mentioned the lords of terror and politics. We made this criticism before… Başbuğ is talking about the lords in the region who are taking advantage of this war. Who supported the development of these lords till this time? Who wanted this system to stay as it is?

You bear as much responsibility for these feudal lords as they themselves… The Turkish Army and the bureaucracy have maintained and made sure that this feudal system has survived till today… For 80 years you have oppressed the Kurds, prevented the democratic progress, prevented the development of even the simplest human freedoms,suppressed all political and human rights and now you are talking about the lords of terror and politics.

If you don’t want the lords of politics, then allow for the emergence of democratic politics. You cannot be afraid and complain about these lords if you don’t allow for democratic politics.’

Turkish politicians are not implementing the policy of Ataturk In a letter I received it says, ‘Andrew Mango was asked: ‘what do you think of the Democratic Expansion?’ and Mango replied; ‘the Kurdish Expansion is a necessary continuation of Ataturk’s revolutionary principles.’

‘The Turkish politicians of today who say they are the followers of Ataturk, don’t have anything to do with him, they do not even know what Ataturk stands for. On 10th February 1922 Mustafa Kemal emphasised that the Kurds had the right to autonomy, these are his ideas.’

Tansu Çiller was a CIA Agent
‘Tansu Çiller was nowhere to be seen till 1992, nobody knew her. Using Süleyman Demirel, they made Tansu Çiller, a CIA agent, into the Prime Minister of Turkey. This is when the green light was given for them to massacre the Kurds. During this period the UK said to General Doğan Güreş and Tansu Çiller ‘we have given you the green light, you can attack the Kurds.’

In the '90s Çiller and Güreş inflicted unimaginable tyranny on the Kurds. There were thousands of extra-judicial killings; thousands of beautiful people were killed… Ergenekon is a prime example of this. They turned the Kurds and Turks into their enemies. What more could they have done? What could be worse than having a CIA agent as Prime Minister? The newspapers of the day also wrote that she was an agent.’

Don’t they have even a little conscience
‘Deniz Baykal (CHP) and Devlet Bahçeli (MHP), who are they and what are they in politics for? Their politics has nothing to do with Turks or Turkish nationalism. What the MHP is doing is not Turkism. The Turkism they represent has only a hundred year history and was concocted later on. Every day people are dying. Don’t Baykal and Bahçeli see this, don’t they have a conscience? How can they stand by and let this happen, it is impossible to comprehend.’

On the DTP and PKK

‘Whether they fight, escalate the war or surrender I can’t interfere. It is their choice. It would not be practical if the DTP and the PKK burdened me with any more responsibility… If I am to help solve this problem, then my path must be cleared. War and peace is something that is up to them.’

Things can be agreed upon in negotiation

‘A social compromise can be agreed upon with negotiations. The democratic potential of society will develop with a social compromise. A social compromise is for the benefit of all, it will mean everyone wins, society wins. Democratic negotiations must begin in October. If negotiations begin, a solution will develop. Why are they afraid of negotiating? They will come together, negotiate and a solution will begin to take shape. What is there to be afraid of?

A regular meeting in Parliament will not do, the problem should be discussed responsibly… Negotiations will also reveal who is for and who is against a solution. Also it will show who wants peace and who wants war, who wants justice, who wants injustice, who is for extra-judicial killings who is for law, who wants an enlightened country, who wants a country in darkness. If negotiations take place, the masks of those who don’t want peace and a solution will fall.

It will show who is for the independence of this country… If peace comes Turkey will be a shining light in the Middle East. And it will become a model. If I am given the opportunity I can knock the masks off those that don’t want peace and a solution. Who is for fraternity let it be known. And then the Turkish people can make their own decisions about me.’

Anything can happen in this period
‘We are in a period where anything is possible. We will see all together how it will progress and conclude. The USA is telling the AKP to solve the problem. However, the AKP hasn’t even comprehended the problem. The Prime Minister has comprehended a little, but the AKP do not know how to manoeuvre.

The USA wants a solution, but the fascist structure will not allow it and the US does not know what to do. The USA cannot get the AKP to lead a reforming coup; its structure isn’t suitable for this. The government’s situation is clear…’

They know that I will not betray the Kurds

‘They will attack the PKK and the Kurds for another period of time. They will try this method for a while. However, they will not be successful, their success is not possible. They know me; they know I will not betray the Kurds. What more do you want of me? The situationof the Kurds is clear. I’ve written the road map for a solution. The state is examining it.’

Source:Kurdish Info.

Nazand Begikhani’s New Poetry Season in Europe

KurdishMedia.com

With the sudden steps of autumn, Kurdish poet Nazand Begikhani has started a new poetic season with readings in Norway and France.

Begikhani read some of her new Kurdish and English poems at the Bergen Public Library on September 9th. She was invited by the international organization for freedom of expression, ICORN (www.icorn.org ), and the Bergen Public Library to participate in a literary event, which gathered Kurdish and Norwegian poets and writers.

On September 29th, Begikhani will participate in the International Poetry Festival in Paris. She will be reading in Kurdish and French at the prestigious Auditorium St German in central Paris, accompanying famous Armenian doudouk player Levon Minassian and his musicians.

(see http://www.poetesaparis.fr/programmegeneral.pdf) also (http://www.billetreduc.com/29667/evt.htm

On November 22nd, Begikhani will walk down by the Seine River to read at the Dansoir Karine Zaporta in Paris’s thirteenth district. She is invited by Mairie 13 and cultural advisor at Montparnasse Museum Mme Zana Victor.

Nazand Begikhani is a Kurdish poet from Southern Kurdistan, who has been living in exile (Denmark, France, UK) since 1987. She holds a Ph.D in comparative literature from the Sorbonne University and currently works as Senior Research Fellow at the University of Bristol.

Begikhani has published five poetry collections in Kurdish and one collection in English, Bells of Speech (ambit, 2006). A collection of her poems will be published in French next spring by Paris-based publisher Les Amandiers. Her collection, Bells of Speech, has been translated from Kurdish into Arabic by Keys Qaradaghi and Muhammed Husseini and will be published by the Damascus-based publishing house, Dar al-Zaman, in the near future.

Begikhani is also an active researcher and advocate for human rights in general and women’s rights in particular. She has published book chapters, articles and reports in Kurdish, English and French. She has also translated selected poems of Baudelaire and T. S Eliot into Kurdish.

Source: KurdishMedia.com

The debacle of DNO's share sale to Turkish Genel Enerji and the role of Kurdish minister in question

By Shwan Zulal

Norway's Det Norske Oljeselskap (DNO) shares were suspended on Monday 21 September and the company share prices were down by almost 45 per cent. This is mainly due to the suspension of its contract by Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), which is a substantial percentage of DNO's business. The Kurdish government has suspended DNO's operations for a maximum period of six weeks and expects DNO to find ways to remedy the damage done to the KRG's reputation after the recent controversy about the share sale; meanwhile another contractor has been brought in to operate the DNO's production until the dispute is resolved.

DNO International Oil is Oslo Listed and is one of the first companies which has started oil exports from Kurdistan Region. The company is operating in Tawke oil field and productions have started at June 2009. According to the Kurdish Natural Resources Ministry figures, DNO was planning to export between 50,000 to 60,000 barrels per day via Turkey.

The episode was sparked by the disclosure of details of share sales which involves selling a substantial stake in the company by KRG officials to Genel Enerji in October 2008. KRG Natural Resources Minister, Ashti Hawrami was exasperated by Oslo Stock Exchange's (OSE) disclosure on 18 September, which showed the involvement of the minister in the transaction. Hawrami and KRG officials refused to take any questions on the minister's involvement and have issued a statement denying any wrong doing.

OSE claims that DNO knew at the time that the shares were sold to a single buyer linked to one of its projects, and therefore should have identified the buyer. Earlier this year in June Norwegian authorities fined DNO, 2.4 million NKr (370,000) US dollars for not providing sufficient information about the share sale made in October 2008. OSE argued that according to the usual disclosure rules DNO should have identified the buyer, and on appeal DNO was found not to be not in breach of the Securities and Trading Act, for not informing the market, but they were found to be in breach of the Stock Exchange Act for not informing the stock exchange and were subsequently fined.

Ashti Hawrami was named by OSE when considering its decision on DNO's conduct in releasing the information about the Genel Enerji share deal to the market; moreover Dagens Naeringsliv has reported that further investigation has also brought to light Hawrami's involvement by acting as a middle man. The sale involves 43.9 million shares, which is 4.75 per cent of the company and valued at around 30 million US Dollars at the time of the sale. Details are emerging that the stake was held on UK nominee account and was subsequently sold to Genel Enerji which is owned by the Cukurova Group. There are rumours that Hawrami was the beneficiary for the UK nominee account but it is not clear yet as to who have directly benefited from the deal. Moreover DNO disclosed the connection in April when Genel was awarded a stake in DNO's Duhok and Tawke production in Kurdistan Region.

The KRG issued a statement saying that the disclosure is due to a row between DNO and its regulator OSE which had caused "unjustifiable and incalculable" harm to its reputation and added:" KRG has facilitated the treasury shares transaction with the sole intention of helping DNO to raise the capital required for its projects in the Kurdistan Region. We wish to make it absolutely clear that neither the KRG nor any of its ministries, officials, employees or advisers has benefited directly or indirectly, through DNO or Genel Enerji, from the transaction or subsequent resale of the shares referred to by OSE."

DNO reiterated that it does not agree with OSE's decision to publish the content of the document and the resolutions made by the OSE's board of directors and committees. DNO was quoted by Dow Jones newswire saying;"By doing so the OSE has breached its confidentiality obligations and released misleading and incomplete information, and this has caused the media to publish speculative, misleading and incorrect information causing unjustifiable and incalculable harm to the reputation of DNO as well as the KRG and Minister of Natural Resources."

Amidst all the controversy, Norway's financial regulator Kredittilsynet is reported to have asked the police to query DNO's share sale. The fallout has affected confidence in the licences granted or to be granted by KRG to the foreign oil companies, as it is evidence that the regions' administration have undermined due process and acted incompetently. Furthermore, the row has casted doubts on the future of a planned merger between Turkeys Genel and Heritage Oil which are two significant players in Kurdistan as well as negatively affecting shares in other oil companies operating in the Kurdish area like Keystone and the exception was Sterling Energy as its share rose last week after assigning an Egyptian company to start drilling in the Region.

Kurdistan Region is said to have reserves of at around 45 billion barrels, and the authorities have been hoping to become a major oil exporter in the area in pursuit independence aspirations one day. Nevertheless this row has damaged the reputation of the region and it once again highlighted the urgency for reform and the need for transparency and the rule of law.

KRG has also asked for an apology to try to restore its reputation, but the damage has been done and it will take time and hard work by the Kurdish government to convince investors that Kurdistan is open for business and the government does not act arbitrarily as it wishes. Law suits have been discussed by KRG and DNO, and details of who has benefited from the share sale and any foul play by either side may yet come out, meanwhile DNO has hinted that it is considering to list in another exchange.

The disclosure of information about KRG minister's involvement in the deal and acting as an intermediary in an obscure transaction will defiantly present an opportunity for Baghdad to have a dig at KRG and reiterate its rhetoric and position of refusing to recognise any oil contracts entered into by the KRG and render them illegal.

The debacle highlights the opaque way KRG has been dealing with its financial affairs and the way it manages public finances. The minister in question and other government officials may have acted fraudulently or it may well be incompetence and naivety, the result is an embarrassment for Kurdistan Region. If KRG version of events were true and the share deal was a mere capital raising exercise, the questions which needs to be answered is; why this was not made public at the time and who had authorised such transaction because after all it is public money.

If the minister has acted capriciously in both occasions of share sale and the suspension of DNO contract, he should certainly lose the cabinet's confidence and questions needs to be answered about who knew what and why proper procedures were not followed dealing with public finances. A transaction of this magnetite and on such high level of government needs much more scrutiny together with diligence and professionalism.

There is yet more drama to come as the minister is indignant that he has done nothing wrong and DNO is trying to please KRG officials by attacking OSE. The suspension on DNO shares has been lifted despite the company request to keep it suspended by OSE and shares have somewhat rebounded on Friday by as much a 19 per cent after Reuters reported that sources from KRG have said that they are "hopeful" the row would be settled.

Source: KurdishMedia.com


Sunday, September 27, 2009

So-called Middle-Eastern experts



Kurds love to listen to foreigners. I know this from experience. In the west there are a lot of ‘Middle-Eastern experts’ who seem to not know the local languages and still claim to be an expert on this regions. For instance, recently there was a Dutch politician Dries van Aght who wrote about Palestine, but he doesn’t even know the Arabic language.

Read more

PKK General Says Kurdish Militants are Ready for War or Peace: An Exclusive Interview with Murat Karayilan

Murat Karayilan is the acting commander of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (Partiya Karkeren Kurdistan - PKK) and chairman of the executive council of the Kurdish Democratic Confederation (Koma Civaken Kurdistan - KCK). Karayilan, whose surname means “black snake,” joined the PKK in 1979, just a year before the 1980 Turkish military coup. The PKK is listed as a terrorist organization by the European Union, the United States and Turkey. In an August 11 interview with Karayilan in a PKK camp located in the mountains of northern Iraq, Karayilan said that he would like to return to his home country. “But I am not dreaming about this, I am a realist.”

Despite Continued Suppression of the Kurds, the Kurdish Freedom Movment Still Give Chance for Peace!


Kurdish Info 25.09.2009- In its latest statement the KCK Executive Council Leadership has announced that the Turkish General Staff’s request for a military bill is a declaration of war against the people of Kurdistan.

The KCK Executive Council Leadership also commented that the Turkish state and AKP government weren’t looking for a solution to the Kurdish problem. The statement noted that the aim of recent developments was to weaken, isolate and eliminate the Kurdistan Freedom Movement.

The road map written by the Kurdish people’s national leader Abdullah Öcalan hadn’t yet been released to the public, the continuing political and military operations, and the agreements made with the central Iraq government were all proof of this, said the statement.

The KCK called into question the AKP government’s contradictory stance and reminded the public of Erdoðan’s insistence on the national unity project, whilst also saying that the military bill would be put before parliament. This would not mean a solution to the Kurdish problem but a declaration of war against the people of Kurdistan, said the KCK.

The fact that 25 cross-border operations had been carried out before was also called to attention and it was noted that this bill would not be any different. The bill would mean that the war would escalate, the politics of denial and elimination would be continued and Southern Kurdistan would be put under threat.

WE WILL ANNOUNCE OUR DECISION TO THE PUBLIC
Attention has turned in the past few days to the Kurdish side regarding the ceasefire position they had taken since 13th April.

The KCK also made a statement regarding this issue. The statement noted that recent developments had proved that the Turkish state didn’t have a serious and consistent approach to the problem.

‘Despite everything, we are insistent and determined on a democratic solution’ said the KCK, and announced that they would decide their position according to the developments over the next few weeks. It was also added that the Kurdish issue had been discussed in detail by all parties in Turkey and Turkish politics for the first time.

However, ‘The unilateral ceasefire of the Kurdish resistance has meant that our people and movement have paid dearly.’ It was reminded that during this period, the military operations of the Turkish Army had cost the lives of 63 guerrillas and hundreds of Kurdish politicians; children and members of the public had been arrested.

Furthermore the conditions of their leader had not been improved at all and his road map had not been released for public opinion said the KCK.

The KCK went on to say, ‘Despite all this, our movement, leader and people are insisting and sincere for a peaceful solution to this problem.’

The statement also emphasised that a solution could not be reached with the efforts of only one side. ‘No deceptions, use of force or special war manoeuvres will be able to defeat our Freedom Movement,’ said the KCK, appealing to the Turkish state.

The statement called for the AKP and all the forces operating within the state to ‘abandon the politics of annihilation, and approach the problem in a realistic way to achieve an honourable peace and democratic solution.’

The KCK also pointed out that all over the world these types of problems were solved through negotiation. And called on the EU and the USA to be aware of the demagogues and support a democratic solution rather than terror and massacre.

Source: www.hevallo.blogspot.com

Öcalan: I’ve written and presented all that is needed for a democratic solution


Submitted by Tsiatsan on Sunday, September 27 2009
löjl
güncel Kurdish Info 27.09.2009-Kurdish Leader Abdullah Öcalan has had his weekly meeting with his solicitors. Assessing the recent situation, Öcalan said, ‘I’ve presented my views for a solution. There is not much more I can do. It is in the Road Map: I will still do everything I can for a solution, but these conditions won’t permit me to do much more. It is physically impossible. The Turkish state, the DTP and the PKK are putting all the responsibility on to my shoulders. This is unrealistic.I don’t even have freedom of movement here. You are not able to improve conditions here but you burden me with responsibility. You are not going to give me the means to solve this problem but still heap responsibility on to me. This is not the right way to do things,’ he said.
Öcalan responds to the Chief of General Staff
Responding to General Başbuğ’s ‘there are lords of terror and politics’ comment, Öcalan said, ‘Başbuğ has mentioned the lords of terror and politics. We made this criticism before… Başbuğ is talking about the lords in the region who are taking advantage of this war. Who supported the development of these lords till this time? Who wanted this system to stay as it is? You bear as much responsibility for these feudal lords as they themselves… The Turkish Army and the bureaucracy have maintained and made sure that this feudal system has survived till today… For 80 years you have oppressed the Kurds, prevented the democratic progress, prevented the development of even the simplest human freedoms,suppressed all political and human rights and now you are talking about the lords of terror and politics. If you don’t want the lords of politics, then allow for the emergence of democratic politics. You cannot be afraid and complain about these lords if you don’t allow for democratic politics.’

Turkish politicians are not implementing the policy of Ataturk In a letter I received it says, ‘Andrew Mango was asked: ‘what do you think of the Democratic Expansion?’ and Mango replied; ‘the Kurdish Expansion is a necessary continuation of Ataturk’s revolutionary principles.’ ‘The Turkish politicians of today who say they are the followers of Ataturk, don’t have anything to do with him, they do not even know what Ataturk stands for. On 10th February 1922 Mustafa Kemal emphasised that the Kurds had the right to autonomy, these are his ideas.’

Tansu Çiller was a CIA Agent
‘Tansu Çiller was nowhere to be seen till 1992, nobody knew her. Using Süleyman Demirel, they made Tansu Çiller, a CIA agent, into the Prime Minister of Turkey. This is when the green light was given for them to massacre the Kurds. During this period the UK said to General Doğan Güreş and Tansu Çiller ‘we have given you the green light, you can attack the Kurds.’ In the '90s Çiller and Güreş inflicted unimaginable tyranny on the Kurds. There were thousands of extra-judicial killings; thousands of beautiful people were killed… Ergenekon is a prime example of this. They turned the Kurds and Turks into their enemies. What more could they have done? What could be worse than having a CIA agent as Prime Minister? The newspapers of the day also wrote that she was an agent.’

Don’t they have even a little conscience
‘Deniz Baykal (CHP) and Devlet Bahçeli (MHP), who are they and what are they in politics for? Their politics has nothing to do with Turks or Turkish nationalism. What the MHP is doing is not Turkism. The Turkism they represent has only a hundred year history and was concocted later on. Every day people are dying. Don’t Baykal and Bahçeli see this, don’t they have a conscience? How can they stand by and let this happen, it is impossible to comprehend.’

On the DTP and PKK
‘Whether they fight, escalate the war or surrender I can’t interfere. It is their choice. It would not be practical if the DTP and the PKK burdened me with any more responsibility… If I am to help solve this problem, then my path must be cleared. War and peace is something that is up to them.’

Things can be agreed upon in negotiation
‘A social compromise can be agreed upon with negotiations. The democratic potential of society will develop with a social compromise. A social compromise is for the benefit of all, it will mean everyone wins, society wins. Democratic negotiations must begin in October. If negotiations begin, a solution will develop. Why are they afraid of negotiating? They will come together, negotiate and a solution will begin to take shape. What is there to be afraid of? A regular meeting in Parliament will not do, the problem should be discussed responsibly… Negotiations will also reveal who is for and who is against a solution. Also it will show who wants peace and who wants war, who wants justice, who wants injustice, who is for extra-judicial killings who is for law, who wants an enlightened country, who wants a country in darkness. If negotiations take place, the masks of those who don’t want peace and a solution will fall. It will show who is for the independence of this country… If peace comes Turkey will be a shining light in the Middle East. And it will become a model. If I am given the opportunity I can knock the masks off those that don’t want peace and a solution. Who is for fraternity let it be known. And then the Turkish people can make their own decisions about me.’

Anything can happen in this period
‘We are in a period where anything is possible. We will see all together how it will progress and conclude. The USA is telling the AKP to solve the problem. However, the AKP hasn’t even comprehended the problem. The Prime Minister has comprehended a little, but the AKP do not know how to manoeuvre. The USA wants a solution, but the fascist structure will not allow it and the US does not know what to do. The USA cannot get the AKP to lead a reforming coup; its structure isn’t suitable for this. The government’s situation is clear…’

They know that I will not betray the Kurds
‘They will attack the PKK and the Kurds for another period of time. They will try this method for a while. However, they will not be successful, their success is not possible. They know me; they know I will not betray the Kurds. What more do you want of me? The situationof the Kurds is clear. I’ve written the road map for a solution. The state is examining it.’

Source: www.kurdish-info.eu