Monument erected in memory of Sakine, Fidan and Leyla in Paris

A monument has been placed at the place where Sakine Cansız, one of the founders of the PKK, KNK Paris Representative Fidan Doğan and Youth Movement member Leyla Şaylemez, were massacred. The monument was unveiled yesterday with a ceremony.

On the 5th anniversary of the massacre of PKK co-founder Sakine Cansız, KNK Paris representative Fidan Doğan and Kurdish Youth Movement member Leyla Şaylemez, a monument engraved with the names of the Kurdish women were placed on 147 La Fayette Street, where the Kurdish Information Centre is located.

French politicians, representatives of Kurdish institutions and families were present at the unveiling of the monument and the anniversary commemoration event organized by the Municipality of Paris, the 10th Municipality of Paris and the Democratic Kurdish Council of France. Alongside information about Cansız, Doğan and Şaylemez, the words “Three Kurdish women militants were massacred here” were engraved on the monument.


The event, organized by the Kurdish women's movement at 13:30 today, began with a mass silent march in front of the Democratic Kurdish Community Center in Paris. In front of the march cortege were photos of Cansız, Doğan and Şaylemez with wreaths on behalf of PKK, Kurdish People's Leader Abdullah Öcalan, KNK, CDK-F, TJK-E, Cîwanên Azad and FEDA. Following the end of the march in front of the Kurdish Information Bureau, the memorial and monument unveiling ceremony began.

Speeches were made by Helene Bidard, Vice President of the Paris Metropolitan Municipality, Remy Ferre, 10th Mayor of Paris, Alexander Cordebard, 10th Paris Mayor, Andre Metayer on behalf of the National Coordination of Solidarity with Kurdistan, Nursel Kılıç on behalf of the Kurdish Women's Movement, and Egît Polat on behalf of the CDK-F in the ceremony.


10th Paris Mayor Alexandra Cordebard made the opening speech of the ceremony. Cordebard briefly described the lives of the three Kurdish women and remarked: “Three Kurdish militant women struggled for universal values of mankind. Their lives passed on like that. Our aim with this monument is to not forget them and make them unforgettable in Paris. Such a monument is here for this.”

Remy Ferre, noting her sadness on the murder of three 3 Kurdish women in her region during her mayor's term in 2013, said: “We started this kind of work after the massacre to not forget these women. We made this memorial work in conjunction with the metropolitan municipality. This should not be treated as just a monument. It is a sign that we are next to the struggle of the Kurds.” Ferre also called out to the French judiciary for justice to be served.


Speaking on behalf of the France National Coordination of Solidarity with Kurdistan, Andre Metayer said that despite all the evidence and documents related to the case, it was not brought to light. He said, “However, in spite of all, justice has not been done. The French judiciary should bring criminals to jurisdiction and ensure justice.”


Sakine Cansız's brother Metin Cansız also said that the municipality of Paris saw the opening of the monument positively.

"I hope that this sensitivity of your municipality is reflected in your judiciary. We Kurds will not be as silent as others who have been killed and murdered before," said Cansız, who stated that the search for justice will continue until the end.

Leyla Şaylemez's father, Cumali Şaylamaz, called on the judiciary to duty for justice to be served.


On behalf of the Kurdish Women's Movement, Nursel Kılıç also began by commemorating Cansız, Doğan and Şaylemez. Kılıç, who thanked the French institutions and figures who are in solidarity with the Kurdish justice campaign, said: “Three Kurdish women represent three generations. Sakine Cansız was a symbol of the freedom struggle. Like Rosa Luxemburg and Clara Zetkin, she has been written on the revolutionary history of the world.

The line she represents is finding life in Rojava today. Again, Fidan Doğan is a Kurdish diplomat who grew up in France. Leyla Şaylemez represented her younger generation,” she said. Referring to the statements of MİT executives held by the KCK, Kılıç continued, “The statements of MİT executives also expresses that the force behind the massacre is the Turkish state. France must consider these statements and provide justice as soon as possible. The enlightenment of this case may set an example for other murders.”


Speaking on behalf of the Democratic Kurdish Council of France, Egît Polat, referring to Erdogan-European relations, stressed that the repeat of the massacre in 2013 is imminent, and said: “At this moment the agents of the Turkish state are swarming around in European countries. Although all European intelligence knows this, no action has been taken against them. Recently, immediately after the meeting between Erdogan and Emmanuel Macron, Kurdish footballer Deniz Naki was attacked in Germany. This shows how great the danger is. If the massacre of 2013 is brought to light and if justice finds its place, it will also overtake all other initiatives.”


Helene Bidard, Vice President of the Paris Metropolitan Municipality, said that they had lived the pain of such a murder in Paris and said, "We living the pain of these three women who struggled in the name of humanity and universal values. We have made such a monument as a municipality to keep people's memories alive. We are now part of the justice struggle from the first day of the incident as an institution. The judiciary has to enlighten this case. This responsibility is on the current government. Because the murder of three Kurdish women points to Ankara.”

Following the speeches, an official ceremony was held to unveil the monument. The ceremony ended with a stand in silence in memory of Cansız, Doğan and Şaylemez.