Intellectuals in the diaspora work for reopening of Kurdish Institute in Berlin

Intellectuals from the Kurdish diaspora are working for the reopening of the Kurdish Institute in Berlin to promote the Kurdish language and culture. The Berlin office is intended as a point of contact for Kurdish intellectuals in Europe.

The Kurdish Institute in Berlin is to open its doors again. A ten-person commission was formed for the reopening of the historic centre. Several writers and people working in the cultural field, including Beyazıt Taş, Erkan Demirtaş, Dılşat Simeni, Semira Abdullah, Kardo, Dr. Gundî, Murat Rojin, Gulgeş Deryaspi, Cemal Xinzor, Kazım Baba, Gıyasettin Sayan, Hüseyin Taşan, Ahmet Aktaş and Meral Şimşek, participated in a meeting about the reopening of the institute in Berlin.

Kurdish writer Meral Şimşek, who now lives in exile in Germany due to political persecution in Turkey, explained the initiative. She recalled that the Kurdish Institute moved from Berlin to Cologne in 2007, and said that a branch of the institute will now open in the German capital. The writer said: “At our meeting we formed a commission to start preparing for the opening of a branch in Berlin. Later, we plan to organize a congress and present the work we have prepared. One of our goals is to create a branch in the capital. We want to take concrete steps in the promotion of both the Kurdish language and culture and we aim to become a reference for Kurdish intellectuals and writers.”

Ahmet Aktaş, representative of the Kurdish Institute in Germany, said that the institution organizes language courses, seminars and events. However, the offer has decreased significantly and now needs to be reactivated. “That is why we want to open a representation in Berlin and bring together Kurdish intellectuals living in Europe. We are also planning conferences where we will present the richness of the Kurdish language and culture.”