Last night, the Kurdish People’s Democratic Assembly in Haringey, London, was subject to nothing short of an aggressive invasion by the police. There were no warrants and no legitimate reason for the aggression and violence that they conducted themselves with against a community of civilians celebrating a cultural event. This invasion by the Metropolitan Police comes only two days after UK defence minister Grant Shapps and Turkish counterpart Yaşar Güler held a meeting agreeing to “enhance” defence and security cooperation.
As a result of foreign influence on parliament, we are seeing an increase in the number of people within our communities being arrested through the liberally applied ‘Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act‘ (2000), including last week when our community was subject to another aggressive display by the police as they swarmed a small protest, outnumbering the protesters themselves and separating parents from the children, then interrogating them in front of their helpless and crying children. There is also the upcoming trial of Mark Campbell and a Kurdish asylum seeker, ‘Berîtan’, on the 17th and 18th of January, who will face trial for holding a Kurdish flag during a protest.
We must also highlight that this year is also 100 years since Kurdistan was divided by the Sykes-Picot agreement. Since that agreement, the Kurdish people have been subject to continuous attempts of ethnic cleansing, genocide, and ecocide by Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Turkey, including the Dersim Massacre, the Anfal Genocide Campaign, the Yazidi Genocide, etc.
As a result, many civilians are forced to seek asylum in the UK and elsewhere. Yet what we are seeing is that, despite Turkey’s support for the ISIS insurgency in North and East Syria, the ethnic cleansing they have committed in Afrîn, and their heinous violations of human rights in Turkish prisons, as members of NATO, Grant Shapps and the UK government would have us believe that they are valuable allies whose “influence cannot be underestimated.”
The Kurdish People’s Democratic Assembly invites all ethnic, religious, and cultural communities and organisations across the UK to unite with us to prevent the criminalisation of communities, mainly through the misuse of the Terrorism Act. The Metropolitan Police should not be a ‘for hire’ mercenary service to do the bidding of foreign dictatorships, and UK politicians must not be able to use the means of the justice system to advance their own political agendas.
Long Live the Democratic Resistance
~ Kurdish People’s Democratic Assembly Britain
UPDATE: Following the attack at the Kurdish Community Centre by the police, we will be increasing our campaigning work to decriminalise communities.
“Over the past 10 years, KCK (NADEK) and Peace in Kurdistan (CAMPACC) have worked to bring communities together, uniting with them towards the common goal of democracy, equality, women’s rights and the right to self-determination.
The government-backed attack on NADEK by the police is not just an attack on Kurds; it is an attack on All oppressed communities and the mission of NADEK!”