Kurds from around Europe demonstrate over killings in Paris

Jan 6, 2023, 11:17 AM | Updated: Jan 7, 2023, 7:18 am
Kurdish activists protest in Paris, Saturday, Jan. 7, 2023. Kurdish groups from around France and E...

Kurdish activists protest in Paris, Saturday, Jan. 7, 2023. Kurdish groups from around France and Europe are marching in Paris to show their anger over the unresolved killing of three Kurdish women activists in the French capital 10 years ago and also mourning three people killed outside a Kurdish cultural center in Paris two weeks ago in what prosecutors called a racist attack. ( AP Photo/Lewis Joly)

( AP Photo/Lewis Joly)

PARIS (AP) — Thousands of Kurds from around France and Europe marched through Paris on Saturday to show their anger over the unresolved killing of three Kurdish female activists in the French capital 10 years ago.

The marchers are also mourning three people killed outside a Kurdish cultural center in Paris two weeks ago in what prosecutors called a racist attack.

Kurdish activists from Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Belgium arrived in buses, escorted by police, and joined fellow Kurds from France in a peaceful march through northeast Paris. The demonstration was timed to mark the 10th anniversary of the killings of Sakine Cansiz, Fidan Dogan and Leyla Saylemez on Jan. 9, 2013.

Cansiz was a founder of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, which Turkey, the United States and the European Union consider a terrorist group.

Kurdish activists suspect the Turkish intelligence service was involved in the killing. The suspected attacker, a Turkish citizen, died in French custody before the case reached trial. Turkish officials suggested at the time that the killings may have been part of an internal feud among Kurdish activists or an attempt to derail peace talks.

Marchers carried banners bearing the victims’ portraits, as well as flags for the PKK, which is banned in Turkey.

Berfin Celebm, a 26-year-old who came from Amsterdam for the march, accused Turkey of involvement in both the 2013 and 2022 attacks.

“I want to support my struggle and I want to support Kurdish women,” she told The Associated Press.

While most marchers were Kurdish, the crowd also included left-wing French activists and some ethnic Turks.

“Today we are here to support our Kurdish friends because I am Turkish myself, and it is very important, because what is happening with the Kurdish people can happen to us as well tomorrow,” said Ibrahim Halac, a Turkish man living in Paris.

Organizers sought to keep the crowd contained. Paris police were on alert Saturday after skirmishes at Kurdish gatherings in the past, notably in response to last month’s shooting.

After the Dec. 23 attack, the suspected assailant told investigators he had a “pathological” hatred of non-European foreigners, according to prosecutors. He was handed preliminary charges of racially motivated murder, though Kurdish activists suspect the attack was politically driven.

Turkey summoned France’s ambassador last week over what it called propaganda by Kurdish activists in France after the shooting.

The PKK has waged a separatist insurgency against the Turkish state since 1984. Turkey’s army has battled Kurdish militants affiliated with the PKK in southeast Turkey as well as in northern Iraq, and recently launched a series of strikes against Kurdish militant targets in northern Syria.

___

Angela Charlton contributed to this report.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - John Lydon attends the LA premiere of "Punk" at SIR in Los Angeles, Monday, March 4, 2019. P...
Associated Press

Punk icon Lydon fails in bid to play Eurovision Song Contest

LONDON (AP) — Punk icon John Lydon has failed in his attempt to become Ireland’s entry for the pop music competition the Eurovision Song Contest. The former Sex Pistols frontman entered the song “Hawaii” with his post-punk band Public Image Ltd. in the national runoff for May’s continent-wide contest. Jurors and viewers of a televised […]
1 day ago
A woman lights up the road with a flashlight during blackout in Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, Feb. 3, 2023...
Associated Press

Dozens of soldiers freed in Russia-Ukraine prisoner swap

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Dozens of Russian and Ukrainian prisoners of war have returned home following a prisoner swap, officials on both sides said Saturday. Top Ukrainian presidential aide Andriy Yermak said in a Telegram post that 116 Ukrainians were freed. He said the released POWs include troops who held out in Mariupol during Moscow’s […]
1 day ago
FILE - The British frigate HMS Portland heads through the Suez canal, in Ismailia, Egypt Wednesday,...
Associated Press

Royal Navy sailors hospitalized after drinking water on ship

LONDON (AP) — A Royal Navy warship has returned to port in Britain after several sailors got sick from the vessel’s drinking water, officials said Saturday The navy said frigate HMS Portland had returned to its base at Portsmouth on England’s south coast on Friday “as a precautionary measure, following an issue with one of […]
1 day ago
FILE - An American flag is flown next to the Chinese national emblem during a welcome ceremony at t...
Associated Press

China plays down Blinken’s canceled visit over balloon

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — China played down the cancellation of a visit by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken after a large Chinese balloon suspected of conducting surveillance on U.S. military sites roiled diplomatic relations, saying that neither side had formally announced any such plan. “In actuality, the U.S. and China have never announced any […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Ohio train derailment causes causes fire, home evacuations

EAST PALESTINE, Ohio (AP) — A train derailed in an Ohio town near the Pennsylvania border and caused a large fire followed by orders for area residents to evacuate their homes Friday night, reports said. A post on the East Palestine, Ohio, city Facebook page around 11 p.m. said an evacuation order had been issued […]
1 day ago
Pope Francis meets with a group of the Catholic faithful from the town of Rumbek, who had walked fo...
Associated Press

Pope encourages South Sudanese, will raise plight of women

JUBA, South Sudan (AP) — Pope Francis sought Saturday to console the long-suffering people of South Sudan as he opened his first full day in a country beset by conflict, poverty and humanitarian crises by encouraging priests and nuns to serve their flocks by joining in their tears. After arriving in the world’s newest country […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.
SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Kurds from around Europe demonstrate over killings in Paris