Press conference at the EP on Afrin’s offensive : Statement of the HDP’s european representative

” First of all I would like to thank you on behalf of my party the HDP for being today in this difficult time where civilian population of the city of Afrin is facing the inhuman and illegitimate aggression of Turkey and his mercenaries linked to jihadist groups.

The government of Erdogan, which does not respect the rule of law, continues to carry out a repressive and disproportionate policy against our party the HDP and against all the democratic forces and representatives of the civil society in Turkey.

This aggressive anti-Kurdish policy has now allied itself with the Turkish far-right and is no longer confined to northern Kurdistan but is also acting across borders, attacking northern Syria and its democratic project of the peoples of Rojava.

Since the beginning of the Turkish state offensive, threats have been made by Erdogan in person against the members and sympathizers of our party who denounce this offensive. He said that “those who protest against the Afrin offensive should know that the security forces are ready to fall on them”.

Since that statement, several members of our party and human rights defenders have been arrested for denouncing this war.

It is worth mentioning that our two co-presidents Selahattin Demirtas and Figen Yüksekdag, who are still unfairly detained today, are being prosecuted mainly for speeches they had made in support of Kobane’s resistance, which, we have to recall it, marked the beginning of the end of DAESH thanks to the heroic resistance of young Kurdish men and women.

Should we also recall the operation “Peace for Cyprus” which had turned into an occupation force, or the operation carried out in Turkish prisons in 2000, ironically called “return to life operation” where more than 30 people lost their lives.

Today, Turkey is launching its “olive branch” operation against Afrin which, so far, has already left 37 deads and wounded hundreds of civilians. Turkey, in every case, by using a peaceful appellation for its operations, is mocking national and international public opinion by committing massacres and crimes against humanity.

European policy, based on ambiguity, and the unclear policy of Russia is giving the green light to the actions of Erdogan who takes advantage of this situation to continue to carry out crimes against humanity. Yesterday in Sur and Cizre, today in Afrin.

We call on the European Union and the United Nations to intervene with the government for the immediate cessation of the Turkish state aviation’s bombings in the Afrin region, which until today has been an integration model for all the ethnic and religious components of the region “.