Ban on Kurds pleases Turkey
Wednesday 08 December 1993
Arrests of Kurdish militants since 20 November in France and Germany have dealt a serious blow to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), as many pro-PKK organisations were banned by Paris and Bonn.
The pro-PKK Kurdistan News Agency in Dusseldorf has nearly fallen silent, its last communique spitting out a defiant statement from the PKK leader, Abdullah Ocalan. The Syrian-based Marxist group will doubtless also suffer losses in its millions of pounds of contributions by some 500,000 Kurdish workers in Europe, mostly in Germany.
The appearance of united European action allowed the Turkish Prime Minister, Tansu Ciller, to claim a success for her fragile government in fighting an ever-bloodier separatist rebellion in which more than 10,000 people have died since 1984.
Turkey's media have consistently led Turks to believe that Europe supports the Kurdish rebels. In fact, although European public opinion is broadly pro-Kurdish, governments have supported Ankara for motives ranging from arms sales to regional stability.
Diplomats said the French and German police sweeps were a reaction to shock at co- ordinated attacks by Kurdish activists on scores of Turkish targets in several European cities, including London, in June and November.
Following reports of a special Scotland Yard unit investigating racketeering by the PKK, Turkish newspapers proclaimed that the days of pro-PKK organisations were numbered in Britain as well. This has not been confirmed in London.
The Turkish press has also reported new promises by Syria and Iran to crack down on PKK militants crossing their territory. But Western pressure will continue to push Ankara to rein in brutal practices by the security forces and to adopt a more tolerant policy that would allow its 12 million ethnic Kurds more cultural and political rights.
- 1 I'm A Celebrity 2014: Jungle security stepped up after murder and 'suspicious death' near to camp
- 3 Jeremy Hunt: 'I took my children to A&E because I didn't want to wait for GP appointment'
- 4 Girl, 7, gets Tesco to remove 'stupid' sign suggesting superheroes are 'for boys'
- 5 This letter from a reader explains why women can’t play football
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
Ukip says babies born to immigrants in the UK should be classed as migrants – which would include Nigel Farage’s own children
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
Exclusive: UK approved £7m Israeli arms sales in six months before Gaza conflict
£35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Required skills include SQL querying, SSRS, u...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: C#.Net Developer - C#, ASP.Net, HTML...
Negotiable: Argyll Scott International: Senior Business Analyst - Insurance ...
£25000 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This independent, growing Sales...