Saturday, January 12, 2013

The Word Is Out, Listen and Stay Tuned

Kendal NEZAN, President of the Kurdish Institute of Paris and Board Member of the Washington Kurdish Institute on FRANCE 24's live DEBATE presented by François Picard following the January 10th brutal assassination of three Kurdish activists in Paris. Mr Nezan uses the Cyprus analogy as part of his argumentation. Finally! Kurds begin to see the obvious, that northern Kurdistani freedom goes through Cyprus and vice versa. When will Cypriot politicians join the awakening?

The FRANCE 24 DEBATE video clip (CLICK HERE) listed below appears from minute 04:29 to 08:12. Let the video load a while after you start it & click towards one third of the way, in case you do not wish to hear the first minutes of the discussion:

François Picard: "I believe its the third time they've tried to start talks"

Kendal NEZAN:

"Actually so far, in the last 90 years of the Turkish Republic, Turkey has tried every possible option of eradicating the Kurds, assimilating them, and solving the Kurdish problem by the military and brutal manners. It didn't work. So far the only option which was not really tried was the option of a compromise. Of a democratic settlement of the Kurdish problem. And this war Kurdistan has cost a lot of resources to Turkey. More than three thousand Kurdish villages were destroyed, two million people were displaced. The agriculture which was prosperous until the 1980s was totally wrecked. And according to certain estimates maybe between 300 and 400 billions of dollars were spent in this war. So if you put this money for the development and prosperity of the country it will have a much better result for integration.

So what the Kurds are asking for? Very minimal cultural rights, they are not asking for an independent Kurdistan, they are not asking for a federation, they are asking for their linguistic and cultural rights. Three basic claims are: general amnesty, to finish this period of war, education in Kurdish language to make sure that the Kurdish language and culture will survive as an element of the Kurdish identity, and the recognition of the Kurdish identity in the Turkish constitution.

For a population which is something between 15 to 20 million people those rights are very very basic. It's much much lesser than what Turkey is claiming for the small Turkish Cypriot community in Cyprus. Turkey is asking for a confederation for this Turkish community in Cyprus.

And Turkey is advocating the rights of Palestinians in Gaza and everywhere, and now you have between 15 and 20 million Kurds in Turkey, so what will be the harm for the Turkish population if the Kurds are educated in their own language, if they have their local autonomy, with the mayors deciding all the local issues, That's not the end of the world because 40% of the population of the world is so far governed by federal governments, these countries are very strong, like Canada ... "

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Turkey's Kurds & Cyprus' tCypriots

As either unitary state or federation solutions are discussed as replacements to Cyprus' 1960 and Turkey's 1923 unworkable constitutions, should we abide by "if a right is a right too many for Turkey's Kurdish community (circa 23% of population) then that right is a right too many for Cyprus' tCypriot community too (circa 15%), and vice versa." Is the adoption of this fair logic the catalyst to securing just solutions for both UN countries.