TJK-E condemns the attack on the ‘Freedom for Öcalan Vigil’ in Strasbourg

The Kurdish Women's Movement in Europe (TJK-E) condemned the attack on 27 May against the ‘Freedom for Öcalan Vigil’ in Strasbourg, which has been going on for 12 years.

On 27 May, a racist group of Turks attacked the ‘Freedom Vigil’, which has been held in Strasbourg, France since 25 June 2012 to ensure the physical freedom of Kurdish People's Leader Abdullah Öcalan and to abolish the Imrali genocide system. The attackers broke and scattered the signs at the scene of the vigil while the activists were not present.

In a written statement, the Kurdish Women's Movement in Europe (TJK-E) condemned the attack and called on the French state to take serious measures against provocation attempts. The statement released on Tuesday includes the following:

“It is known to all of us that European countries were in a dirty alliance with Turkey during the process of the handover of Kurdish People's Leader Abdullah Öcalan from Kenya to Turkey on 15 February 1999 through an International Conspiracy. For this reason, the Freedom Vigil organised for the Leader’s freedom since 25 June 2012 has been continued in Strasbourg every week with the embrace of our patriotic people from different regions until today. Leader Öcalan, who has spent the last 25 years in absolute isolation, has also been deprived of lawyer and family meetings for more than three years because of unprecedented lawlessness. For this reason, the Freedom Vigil has recently become even more important and puts pressure on the Council of Europe to overcome this unlawfulness. Patriotic masses showed great sensitivity to the ‘Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan, Political Solution to the Kurdish Question’ campaign initiated by friends of the Kurds on 10 October.

Our women's organisations have carried out a series of actions within the scope of this campaign and sent a letter to the CPT (Committee for the Prevention of Torture) demanding that it act in line with its duty and mission. While all these developments are taking place, the policies of oppression, assimilation and war are increasing day by day in the four parts of Kurdistan. Recently, in Europe, which boasts of its so-called security and democracy, criminalisation efforts against Kurds, attacks on homes and workplaces, raids on TV channels have taken place, creating images that resemble the acts of the fascist Turkish state. And finally, the fascist attack against the Freedom Vigil sets an example of special and psychological warfare. In this sense, the French state's oppression of Kurdish organisations and individuals is proof that it is being used as a tool for the genocide policies of the Turkish fascist state.It should not be overlooked that these attacks, which aim for intimidation and suppression, will not make us take one step back but will enable us to fight more unitedly.

On this basis, we condemn the attack on the Freedom Vigil and expect the French state to take serious measures against these provocative attempts. 

Demanding the freedom of the leader is a right, and we renew our promise that we will use this right everywhere and that we will frustrate these dirty policies with our self-defence.”