Activists at Geneva vigil call for UN action against the blockade of Maxmur

Activists holding a vigil in front of the UN headquarters in Geneva since 2021 condemned the Iraqi blockade of Maxmur Refugee Camp in southern Kurdistan (northern Iraq) and called for UN action.

A vigil by the Democratic Kurdish Community in Switzerland has been taking place in front of the UN headquarters in Geneva since 25 January 2021. Every Wednesday, activists stage a protest in front of the United Nations building to demand the release of Kurdish people’s leader Abdullah Öcalan. The action is carried out as part of the 'Dem dema azadiye' [Time for Freedom] campaign and directed against the isolation of the Kurdish leader on the Turkish prison island of Imrali, the Turkish occupation attacks on Kurdistan, the massacres committed in Kurdish territories and the silence of the UN.

Today’s vigil condemned the Iraqi army’s attempt to surround the Martyr Rüstem Cudi Refugee Camp in Maxmur with barbed wire and towers, and called on the UN to take action to stop the blockade.

During the course of the day, activists read out information texts about the isolation regime imposed on Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan in the Imrali Island Prison in Turkey.

 After a minute of silence paying tribute to the martyrs of the Kurdistan freedom struggle, Mehmet Latif Çelebi, the co-chair of the Kurdish Community Centre in Geneva, denounced the increasingly ongoing attacks against Kurdish lands and the most recent military action taken against the Maxmur Camp.

Çelebi defined the isolation imposed on Öcalan as an attempt to avenge against the Kurdish people and stressed that the genocidal war against the Kurdish people cannot be considered independent from Öcalan’s isolation. He vowed that the Kurdish people would continue to stand up for their leader everywhere and under any circumstances.