YRA and YRJ: No one can silence the free voice of the people

Associations of journalists condemned the raids against Stêrk TV and Medya Haber TV in Belgium and the detention of journalists in Turkey, calling on the public to protect the free press.

The Rojava-based Free Press Association (YRA) and Women's Press Association (YRJ) made a statement against the Belgian police raids on Stêrk TV and Medya Haber TV and the detention of journalists in Turkey.

In the press statement made in front of Mihemed Şêxo Culture and Art Centre in Qamishlo with the participation of many journalists, the text was read in Arabic by YRA member journalist Ekrem Berekat and in Kurdish by YRJ board member, journalist Newroz Demhat.

'Part of the genocide against the Kurds'

The statement said, "The Free Press, the voice of the people, is waging a great struggle. It paid a heavy price to reveal the reality of the occupation and the attacks against the free values of the people. In this struggle, it continued to be the voice and colour of the oppressed peoples against all kinds of occupation and attacks."

In addition to the police raid, the occupying Turkish state also detained journalists in Istanbul and Ankara, the statement continued: "These attacks are part of the genocidal attacks against the people of Kurdistan. It is an attack against the free will that raises its voice against occupation and wants to publicise the reality of these attacks. This is not the first attack, as such attacks have been carried out many times before. However, this attack in such a period is a continuation of the attacks on Kurdistan in general. It is a part of the genocide against Kurds.

As the Women's Press Union (YRJ) and the Free Press Union (YRA), we see these attacks as part of the occupation attacks against us. We would like to tell our people and the public opinion that these attacks will not silence us and that we will continue to be the voice of the truth that our people believe in, struggle for and pay great prices for.

‘No one can silence the free voice of the people’

For this reason, we call on all our fellow journalists, especially women journalists, to be the voice of truth and stand against these attacks to protect the truth. We know that no one can silence the free voice of the people and conceal the genocidal attacks and great heroism in Kurdistan. We call on all our people to protect their free press."