THE TRAGEDY OF THE TURKMENS OF BEŞİR (BASHEER) IN KIRKUK PROVINCE – IRAQ

March 27, 2015 at 3:20 am | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment
Tags:

FOR THE ATTENTION OF THE HONOURABLE MEMBERS OF THE DELEGATION FOR RELATIONS WITH IRAQ IN THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT.

 

THE TRAGEDY  OF THE TURKMENS OF BEŞİR (BASHEER) IN KIRKUK PROVINCE – IRAQ

TWO GENOCIDES  HAVE BEEN COMMITTED AGAINST THEM IN THE PAST 28 YEARS 

            THE FIRST ONE IN APRIL 1986 AND THE SECOND ONE IN JUNE 2014.

By Dr. Hassan Aydinli,

Iraqi Turkmen Front EU Representative

Brussels, 25th March 2015.

 map-of-turkmenli with Beshir

 Notes:

1- Above is the map where the sub-district of BEŞIR (Basheer or Bashir in Arabic) is indicated.

2-The area in green on the map is where the Turkmens have settled in Iraq 1000 years ago.

BEŞIR (Basheer) is the name of a large Turkmen agricultural sub-district situated 25 km south west of Kirkuk whose name has become famous as a symbol of the Turkmens’ sufferings in Iraq after it was mentioned in the Preamble of the new Iraqi Constitution in 2005, along with the names of the Arab sub-district Al-Dujail and of the Kurdish sub-district Halabja, whose populations have suffered the most in Iraq under the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein.

 

Indeed, the ordeals of the Turkmens of BEŞIR (Basheer) under the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein from 1980 up to 2003 have been acknowledged by the legislators and the authors of the new Iraqi constitution as ‘crimes of ethnic cleansing, racial oppression and massacres amounting to genocide, committed against the Turkmens of Basheer’.

 

HISTORY:

 

The history of BEŞIR as a Turkmen agricultural settlement in the north of Iraq goes back to more than 1000 years and its first recorded history goes back to 1556, it is mentioned in the Ottoman registers (Dafter Tahrir of Kirkuk N° 111 of the year 1556 AC) dating back to the reign of the Ottoman Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent and kept in the Turkish Archives in Ankara.

According to these registers there were 89 Turkmen families and 9 bachelors living in BEŞIR in 1556, all of them farmers who had been issued official deeds (certificates) registered in their names.

After WWI, when the new Iraqi state (the Kingdom of Iraq) was established the deeds and property certificates issued during the Ottoman era were renewed in 1936 and registered as deeds being issued by the Iraqi state.

The property ownership situation in Iraq remained unchanged until 14th July 1958 when the Monarchy was overthrown by a coup d’état and the Republic of Iraq was declared.

First genocide: Land confiscation, ethnic cleansing and racial discrimination

During the early years of the Republic the Iraqi Communist Party and their Kurdish leftist allies became predominant and they influenced the political and social orientation of the regime. The government issued many new laws, among them the ‘agrarian law’ which limited the land ownership to a maximum of 2.000 donums (500 hectares) per family.

Many hectares of land were taken from Turkmen families in BEŞIR to be distributed to landless Iraqis such as the Arab nomads and poor Kurds, to help them to settle around BEŞIR.

Furthermore in 1968, when the Baath party came to power in Iraq by a military coup, it embarked in a policy of arabization of the Turkmen region in Kirkuk Province, they issued new laws limiting the property ownership to 200 donums (50 hectares) per family (law number 117 of 1970) and more agricultural lands belonging to the Turkmen families living in BEŞIR and in the other Turkmen villages around Kirkuk were confiscated.

From 1970 to 1980 the Revolutionary Command Council of the Baath regime issued several decisions by which they confiscated lands belonging to Turkmens, supposedly for the purpose of general public interest (protection of oil fields, enlargement of the military installations, new air base, etc.), i.e. Decision Number 369 of 1975, Decision Number 824 of 1976, Decision Number 949 of 1977, Decision 1065 of 1978 etc… This is how 1.300.000 Donums (325.000 hectares) of agricultural land belonging to Turkmens of Kirkuk were confiscated (as indicated in the letter from the Judicial Adviser of the Ministry of Agriculture in Kirkuk to the Minister of Agriculture Ref 16784 dated 25/11/2010).

All these confiscated Turkmen lands have been registered as ‘lands belonging to the Iraqi state’ in the names of:  the Ministry of Finance or the Ministry of Local Administration.

In 1982 after the start of the Iraq-Iran war, and despite the enrolment of several hundreds of Turkmens from BEŞIR in the army to fight against the Iranians, the Iraqi security forces arrested hundreds of intellectuals from BEŞIR, accusing them of being opponents to the Baath party and affiliated to the forbidden Al-Dawa Party (Shi’a).

In 1984, after summary judgements by a revolutionary court,  93 intellectuals of BEŞIR were sentenced to capital punishment and were hanged  and 71 were sentenced to life imprisonment in Abu Ghraib prison, among them young boys  aged 16 and elderly men over 60.

In 1986 while the young men of BEŞIR, were still fighting on the front in the war against Iran, the Baath regime, not satisfied with the above mentioned unjust punishments of innocent Turkmens of BEŞIR, ordered the expulsion of their families, giving them 48 hours to pack their personal effects and leave their homes. They were forcibly moved to some communal compounds which had been built in a rush to serve as ‘transitional accommodation’ on the road to Tikrit. Their houses were razed to the ground and their agricultural lands were confiscated and were given to Sunni Arabs supporting the Baath regime, in application of a policy designed to arabize Turkmen towns and villages in Kirkuk province.

Each of these Arab families were given 10.000 Iraqi Dinars in cash (equivalent of 33.000 USD) as incentive to build their house on Turkmen lands, while the unfortunate Turkmens were displaced without any valid reason or any legal justification and without receiving any compensation.

After a year spent in the communal compounds the Turkmen families from BEŞIR were dispersed to cities throughout Iraq: Nasseriyah, Diyala, Diwania, Kut and Erbil, without being provided with housing and without being compensated for the loss of their livelihoods, houses and agricultural lands.

From being landowners and farmers since centuries in Iraq, the Turkmens of BEŞIR became refugees in their own country and were left completely destitute.

Meanwhile the Baath regime had arabized the name of the village calling it “Al-Bashir” instead of BEŞIR.

After the regime change in April 2003, when the U.S. military occupied the north of Iraq they did not take control of the area around BEŞIR and the Arabs which had been installed there by the Baath regime remained in the area.  The original Turkmen inhabitants of BEŞIR came with tents and camped near the village, demanding the departure of the Arab settlers, they wanted to recuperate their agricultural lands and be compensated for the loss of their properties and loss of earnings since 1986.

A Turkmen NGO built 100 houses for the families of the martyrs, which became the nucleus of the new reconstructed sub-district of BEŞIR and little by little other Turkmen families returned and built their houses there.

In July 2003 the newly returned Turkmens from BEŞIR wanted to remove the Arab settlers by force, the U.S. occupation authorities intervened, they led and controlled a “mediation” in September 2003, but this mediation did not resolve the property dispute, it was only a ‘short-term agreement’ which allowed the Arabs who had settled in BEŞIR to stay on the land for the Winter agricultural season on a ‘non-renewable basis’, it granted them the Winter harvest. The requirement was that they would leave BEŞIR within one year of the signing of the ‘agreement’. After this one year period the Turkmens would be allowed to return on their ancestral lands.

Unfortunately, the Arab settlers did not respect this ‘agreement’ and they refused to leave BEŞIR, despite the new Iraqi government’s offer to give them a sum of money to help them return to the region they came from. To make things worse, they built more and more houses on Turkmen lands.

On 15th January 2004, the Coalition Provisional Authority issued Regulation Number 8, authorizing the Governing Council of Iraq to establish the Iraqi Property Claims Commission. Soon after its creation, the Commission created Tribunals to look at the claims presented by the Iraqis who had been unjustly dispossessed.

The Turkmens of BEŞIR followed the procedures set up by the Commission and in early 2005 they introduced 1.150 claims to the Tribunals set up by the Property Claims Commission in Kirkuk for their confiscated agricultural lands situated in BEŞIR which had been registered in their names in the official old Cadastral Sector of BEŞIR (Sector numbers 36, 38, 45, 46, 47 and 48).

In July 2005 the Tribunals examined these 1.150 claims introduced by the Turkmens of BEŞIR, they found them receivable and justified and they ordered the return of all the agricultural lands to their original owners.

Notwithstanding the decisions of the Tribunals being in favour of the Turkmens of BEŞIR, only 350 of the 1.150 claims have been finalized to-date. This shows that the discrimination against the Turkmens continues in Iraq, despite the regime change and despite a special decree (number 59 / 2088) on 3rd October 2005 from the President of the Republic ordering the central and local authorities in Iraq to execute the decisions of the Tribunals of the Property Claims Commission swiftly and without any further delay.

Regrettably, the Iraqi Ministers of Finance and of Local Administration, under the pressure of the Sunni Arab political parties, have appealed the decisions of the Tribunals for the remaining 800 claims,  arguing that they need these lands supposedly ‘for general public interest’. Consequently, the cases are still pending and the Arab settlers are still living around BEŞIR and exploiting Turkmen agricultural lands.

In 2006, under the government of Prime Minister Ibrahim Al-Jaafary, the actual Prime Minister, Dr. Haidar Al-Ibadi, who was his adviser and was nominated the President of a Committee to investigate the Crimes committed against the people of BEŞIR (under the Baath regime) had asked (on 5th February 2006 in a letter ref.MRW/12/2006) the Governor of Kirkuk, Abdurrahman Mustafa, to update him about the progress of the local authorities of Kirkuk in helping the people of  BEŞIR  to recuperate their lands and to return to their homes.  He asked the Governor to send him a report about the problems still faced by the people of BEŞIR.

On 30th March 2006, the Iraqi Council of Ministers decided to reconstruct the sub-district of BEŞIR and it allocated 43 Billion Iraqi Dinars (about 32 Million USD) for this project and ordered the Finance Ministry (in a letter dated 2nd April 2006 ref. 8/1/5/4423) to allocate 14 Billion Iraqi Dinars to the Ministry of Reconstruction and Housing for the year 2006 to start the reconstruction.

Today, twelve years after the removal of the Baath regime and nine years after the decision of the Iraqi Council of Minister to reconstruct Bashir and despite the budget allocated in 2006 for its reconstruction, not a single house has been built by the Iraqi Government for the Turkmens of BEŞIR, the only realization by the Iraqi Ministry of Reconstruction and Housing and by the Governorate of Kirkuk is a publicity board at the entrance of Taza (near BEŞIR) announcing the ‘Project for the Reconstruction of BEŞIR’.

Second genocide: mass killings, rapes, ethnic cleansing and looting by ISIS terrorist groups

To make things worse for the Turkmens of BEŞIR, the Arab settlers who remained around BEŞIR welcomed the ISIS terrorists when these came to area and they supported them in the attacks on BEŞIR which started on 14th June 2014. BEŞIR inhabitants resisted ISIS attack during 3 days with their small weapons and only little ammunition. Unfortunately, because they did not get any help from the Iraqi forces or from the Kurdish peshmerga, they could not stop the invasion and occupation of BEŞIR by ISIS terrorists.

ISIS occupied BEŞIR on 17th June 2014 and expulsed its entire Turkmen population composed of about 1.500 families, totalising about 10.000 people. ISIS terrorists looted all the homes and properties.  A few days after they had occupied BEŞIR, they published some videos on their websites, showing the demolition of schools, offices, mosques, religious shrines and the library. To terrorize and humiliate the Turkmens, ISIS published photos of their unfortunate victims, some had been beheaded and their bodies had been left in the open to be eaten by wild animals, and some others had been tied to lamp posts.

ISIS has committed war crimes and ethnic cleansing in BEŞIR. During the first three days of their attack they killed 36 unarmed Turkmens. They kidnapped women and children, tortured, raped and savagely killed some of them.

 

A few days after the occupation of BEŞIR, a group of Turkmen volunteers composed of youths from other Turkmen localities (Taza, Tisin, Tuz Khurmatu and Kirkuk) came to help the people of BEŞIR, together they tried to dislodge ISIS terrorists. Unfortunately they failed, 21 were killed and many of them were injured by ISIS snipers positioned in strategic points in and around BEŞIR, armed with heavy long range machine guns. Their task was made difficult because ISIS had already planted explosive devices on the roads leading to BEŞIR and booby trapped buildings and houses in BEŞIR.

On 18th March 2015, a Turkmen unit of the ‘Peoples’ Mobilisation to fight against ISIS’ (Hashd al-Shaabi) tried again to liberate BEŞIR, unfortunately they too failed,  because ISIS terrorists had time to reinforce their positions in and around BEŞIR, positioning many more snipers with long range machine guns in all the strategic high positions. The Turkmen unit managed to reach the Police Station but they were forced to withdraw after suffering many casualties (5 killed and 9 gravely injured).

It is clear that the Turkmen unit of the ‘Peoples’ Mobilisation to fight against ISIS’ with its present day capacity and weapons cannot liberate BEŞIR without reinforcement and support from the Iraqi and/or International Coalition air forces. Unfortunately, to-date, neither has come to their help.

During the 23rd March 2015 Meeting of the Iraqi Council of Ministers in Baghdad, it has been decided that the peoples who have suffered from ISIS terrorist attacks in the north of Iraq, i.e. the Christians, the Turkmens, the Yezidis, the Kurds and the Shabaks, exposing them to mass killings and to internally displacement, are victims of ethnic cleansing, amounting to genocides. Concerning the Turkmens, the Council of Ministers has specified that the Turkmens of TEL AFAR and the Turkmens of BEŞIR, have been victims of genocide by ISIS terrorist groups.

Thus, this is the second genocide committed against the Turkmens of BEŞIR in less than 28 years.

Therefore, we Turkmens of Iraq, call upon the Delegation for Relations with Iraq of the EU Parliament, to support our case and endorse the Turkmen demands stated in the Common Declaration of the indigenous non-ruling peoples of Iraq, (which we presented to the EU Parliament on 19th November 2014) and advocate our requests with the European Parliament, the EEAS, the European Commission and the EU Council.

The Iraqi Turkmens request the following help and support from the European Union authorities:

  • Provide humanitarian aid directly to the remaining 250.000 displaced Turkmens.
  • Provide military training and military equipment directly to the Turkmen units in order to enable them to liberate the sub-district of BEŞIR, the district of TEL AFER and the Turkmen villages around MOSUL which are still occupied by ISIS.
  • Provide material aid to rebuild the homes, properties and infrastructure damaged or destroyed by ISIS terrorist groups in the Turkmen region after it has been liberated.
  • Assist and support the Turkmens in their negotiations with the Iraqi Central Government and the KRG concerning their request for TEL AFAR and TUZHUMATU to be upgraded to the status of Governorates in Iraq.
  • Assist and support the Turkmens in their negotiations with the Iraqi Central Government and the KRG in order to achieve a special status for Kirkuk, whereby the power will be shared equally between the Turkmens, Arabs and Kurds (32% for each of the three main ethnic communities and 4% for the Christian minority of Kirkuk).
  • Assist the Turkmens in their negotiations with the Iraqi Central Government to obtain their fair share of power within the Central Government and their fair share from the Iraqi budget.

Thank you for your understanding and your support.

Recent Articles about the Iraqi Turkmens

March 26, 2015 at 2:28 pm | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment

BESHIR LIBERATORSI

Iraqi  Turkmen Front discusses the political situation and the Suffering of the Displaced in the Kurdistan Region.

http://tnanews.net/en/news.php?id=460

**

Iraqi Turkmens demand armed force of their own ahead of Mosul offensive against ISIL

http://www.todayszaman.com/diplomacy_iraqi-turkmens-demand-armed-force-of-their-own-ahead-of-mosul-offensive-against-isil_375106.html

**

Mass grave of 16 Turkmen fighters killed by ISIS found near Kirkuk

http://www.aa.com.tr/en/world/478649–16-turkmen-bodies-found-in-mass-grave-near-kirkuk-iraq

http://rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/15032015

 Turkmen paramilitary fighters and Shiite militias have discovered a mass grave with 16 Turkmen bodies south of Kirkuk, northern Iraq, during an operation to retake control of the Turkmen village of Bashir from ISIL militants.

According to information from security forces in the region, mines on the roads have slowed down the progress of the operation, which was launched three days ago.
Yilmaz Najjar, head of the Badr Brigades, told that they are working to open a new path as the roads are full of mines.
“A mass grave was found with 16 bodies. The bodies were identified by security forces who found their identity cards. They are Turkmens,” Najjar said.
Najjar added that the “operation team is waiting for support… When it comes we will launch a major offensive operation and take control of Bashir in the next 24 hours.”

***

ISIS ABDUCTED 200 TURKMEN IRAQI WOMEN

http://tnanews.net/en/news.php?id=268

http://www.silkroadreporters.com/2015/03/16/isil-abducted-200-turkmen-iraqi-women/

https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/news/middle-east/17393-official-200-iraqi-turkmen-women-abducted-by-isis

***

 DISPLACED TURKMEN CRISIS ON THE UN HUMAN RIGHTS ANNUAL CONFERENCE

GENEVA

elham abbas geneva

please see: http://tnanews.net/en/news.php?id=482

Clustered ID (Cont’d): SR right to food and on adequate housing – 17th Meeting, 28th Regular Session Human Rights Council

Clustered Interactive dialogue Item 3:
– Special Rapporteur on the right to food A/HRC/28/65
and
– Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living A/HRC/28/62
– 17th Plenary Meeting 28th Regular Session of the Human Rights Council.

Video:

Speaking for the Iraqi Turkmens: Dr. Elham Abbas – Al Khoei Foundation.   PLEASE SEE No 15 

http://webtv.un.org/watch/clustered-id-contd-sr-right-to-food-and-on-adequate-housing-17th-meeting-28th-regular-session-human-rights-council/4100879131001#full-text

  ***

Turkish military starts training missions in Iraq, Syria

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkish-military-starts-training-missions-in-iraq-syria.aspx?PageID=238&NID=79721&NewsCatID=352

 

 

THE TURKMENS OF IRAQ

March 23, 2015 at 12:28 pm | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment

TÜRKMENELI

THE TURKMENS OF IRAQ

The Turkmen region in Iraq ‘TURKMENELI’ (indicated in blue on the map) in 1921,  before the ethnic cleansing, land grabbing and demographic changes which have taken place since then.

In Iraq the Turkmens are around 3 million (population of Iraq: est. 33 million). Turkmens are the third largest ethnic component in Iraq, their first recorded existence as ‘Turks’ in Iraq was in 632 AD.

The Turkmens are a Turkic people, they are the descendants of the Turkish OĞUZ tribes originating in Central Asia. They arrived in Iraq (Mesopotamia) in successive waves and settled there 1.400 years ago. They built principalities/states (Atabegs) and ruled over several regions in Iraq, Syria and Iran for several centuries. Turkmen communities rose to prominence as administrators, merchants and politicians during the Abbasid Caliphate in Baghdad and under the Ottoman Empire. The Turkish era began in the Middle East in 1055 when the Caliph of Baghdad declared the Seljuk commander Tughrul Beg as a “Sultan”.

In Iraq the Turkmens established 6 states: The Seljuks, the Atabegs of Mosul, Erbil and Kirkuk, the Ilkhans, the Jalairids, the Qara Qoyunlu, the Aq Qoyunlu, they ruled Iraq during 453 years.

The Turkmen region in Iraq, called TURKMENELI, lies between the Kurdish region in the northeast and the Arab region in the southwest. It stretches from Tel Afar in the northwest of Iraq at the Syrian border, through Mosul, Erbil, Altun Kopru, Kirkuk, Taza Kurmatu, Daquq, Tuz Khurmatu, Kifri, Khanaquin, Badra and Al-Aziziya southeast of Baghdad close to the Iranian border. The largest concentration of Turkmens lives in the city of Kirkuk, which they consider as their capital city and main cultural centre. There is also a large number of Turkmens in Baghdad.

Before WWI the majority of Turkmens were living in the cities, where they had businesses and shops. They had a high number of intellectuals and lived a peaceful and prosperous life. However, since the beginning of the Iraqi State in 1921, Turkmens were treated as second class citizens, their basic human rights were denied and their political leaders and intellectuals were massacred. As a consequence, they were no longer able to develop and they became the poorest ethnic group in Iraq, they were no longer able to defend themselves and their human rights adequately.

.           Minimizing the Turkmen presence in Iraq

During the Ottoman era, Iraq was administratively divided in three provinces: Baghdad, Mosul and Basra. “Mosul Province” (“Mosul Vilayat”) covered the entire north of Iraq (the present six governorates of Ninewah, Erbil, Suleymaniya, Dohuk, Salaheddin and Kirkuk).

During WWI, the British occupied Basra and Baghdad provinces and the southern part of the Mosul Province. A cease fire was declared on October 30th 1918. However, despite the cease fire the British army occupied the city of Mosul on 11th November 1918 which created the “Dispute of Mosul” between Turkey and Britain which lasted for 8 years.

The British wanted to detach Mosul Province from Turkey for economic and geopolitical reasons – essentially to control the oil reserves of Kirkuk – in order to facilitate the separation, they minimized the Turkmen presence there. Exhausted by 11 years of continuous wars since 1911, Turkey opted for peace and good relations with the west, relinquishing it’s claim on the Mosul province at the Ankara Treaty of June 5, 1926. Mosul has been officially incorporated into Iraq since then. From that date on the problems of the Turkmens intensified.  The successive Iraqi governments continued marginalizing the Turkmens, on the suspicion that they might support Turkey in case Turkey claimed back Mosul. Although Turkmens were loyal Iraqi citizens who had always resisted foreign interference in Iraq they were barred from high and sensitive government positions. They were discriminated and subjected to assimilation policies.

The last reliable census in Iraq was held in 1957 under the Monarchy, according to this census, the Turkmen population was 567.000 when the entire Iraqi population was 6 million. This means that Turkmens represented about 9% of the Iraqi population.

In 1958 the Monarchy was overthrown and Iraq was ruled by the military with the support of the Iraqi Communist party, which included a large number of Kurds within its ranks. A new constitution was issued in which Kurds were declared as ‘partners of the Arabs’, whereas the Turkmens were not mentioned. The Kurdish leader Barzani was brought back from his exile in Russia and he claimed the oil rich Kirkuk to be the capital of his proposed ‘autonomous Kurdistan’. This was rejected by both Turkmens and Arabs.

As Kurds persisted in claiming that Kirkuk was a Kurdish city, tensions rose between the original inhabitants of Kirkuk, the Turkmens, and the Kurdish newcomers to the city. On 14th July 1959 a massacre of the Turkmens took place in Kirkuk, it lasted three days during which the leaders and intellectuals of the Turkmen community were arrested and savagely murdered by the Kurdish militia and Communist party members.

In 1963 the military regime was toppled in another coup d’état, led this time by the Arab Nationalists and Baath party. In the following census the number of Turkmens was minimized in the official records and their population was recorded as 2%. Under the Arab Nationalist Baath party (1963-2003) application of double standards continued and on 24th January 1970 Turkmens were granted ‘cultural rights’, while the Kurds were given ‘autonomy’ in 3 northern provinces on March 11, 1970 and the Turkmen city of Erbil was made their capital. All those major concessions were given without asking the Turkmens. Turkmen as a nationality was removed from the official census forms. Turkmens had to choose between either becoming Arabs or Kurds. They had to declare “change of nationality” to Arabic in order to get jobs. Real estate sales were banned amongst the Turkmens. Sale could only be done to Arabs. The use of the Turkish language was banned in public and government offices. Publications in Turkish were forbidden.

Demographic changes in Turkmeneli

Turkmeneli is a region which contains fertile agricultural lands and also large oil and gas reserves. In order to weaken the Turkmen presence several demographic changes took place in the Turkmen region in the north of Iraq.

After WWI Iraq fell under British Mandate, the British immediately started to develop the oil industry in and around Kirkuk. This necessitated a large work force and a great number of Assyrians, Kurds and Arabs were brought to Kerkuk from other provinces to work in the oil industry. This was the beginning of important demographic changes in the Turkmen region and especially in Kerkuk province.

Other demographic changes took place under the Arabization policy of the Baath regime in the 1980s which installed tens of  thousands of Arab families in Kirkuk city and Kirkuk Province giving them financial incentives, jobs and agricultural lands. Several Turkmen villages were totally destroyed and their inhabitants were forcedly displaced, their agricultural lands were confiscated thus they became homeless and without any resources. The agricultural lands belonging to Turkmens were given to Arabs from neighbouring regions by the government. Today, Turkmens are still waiting to receive compensation for their losses and have still not recuperated their properties and agricultural lands.

The largest demographic change happened in Kirkuk and surrounding Turkmen towns under U.S. occupation in 2003 when the Kurdish leaders Messrs. Barzani and Talabani brought over 600.000 Kurds from other areas in Iraq and even from neighbouring countries to be settled in the city. On 10th April 2003, the US forces authorized the Kurdish militias to advance far beyond their “Autonomous Region” established in the three governorates in the north-east of Iraq (Duhok, Erbil and Suleymaniya) and  to invade and occupy the other governorates of the north of Iraq (Kirkuk, Mosul, Salaheddin and Diyala) where the majority of Iraqi Turkmens live. When they entered Kirkuk the Kurdish Peshmerga immediately occupied all the official buildings, they put fire to the land registry office and destroyed the records and state archives.

Today there is ongoing pressure by Kurdish and Arab authorities to shift the Turkmen population to different areas to continue the demographic change. Numerous incidents of encroachment and seizure of government and private Turkmen land by Kurdish families have been reported. These Kurdish families receive financial assistance from the Kurdish Regional Government to build houses on these Turkmen lands. In almost all Turkmen regions, from Tel Afar to Khanaqin and particularly in the oil-rich province of Kirkuk, the demographic structure was changed with the intention to gain ground for Kurdish authorities.

Since June 2014 many Turkmen cities and villages have been attacked by ISIL, 350.000 Turkmens had to flee leaving everything behind and many were tortured and killed. Neither the Iraqi army which was supposed to protect them nor the Kurdish Peshmerga forces which were stationed nearby came to their help. One of the Turkmen cities, AMIRLI, was besieged by ISIS and its inhabitants heroically resisted for 72 days, but contrary to the city of KOBANI in Syria, this was hardly reported in the western media and it did not get the attention of the western politicians, decision makers and humanitarian organizations. Since June 2014 thousands of internally displaced Turkmens have sought refuge in the Kurdish Region, but many were turned away by the Peshmerga because they are Turkmens. Others were put in transit camps where they live under dire conditions, many babies have died. Thousands of Turkmen families were taken to the south of Iraq where they were given shelter in schools and Husseyniyas (Shiite mosques). To-date, the internally displaced Turkmens have received hardly any help from the Iraqi government, to survive they can only rely on humanitarian help from some Turkish NGOs and the generosity of other Turkmens.

Today, the fate of the Turkmens looks very bleak, their very survival in Iraq is threatened. Therefore, Turkmens are calling on the European Union and the U.S. to help them to obtain  their local autonomy,  self-administration and their self-defence forces in cooperation both with the Iraqi Central Government and the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government.

Turkmens also ask the EU and US to work together with the Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government to realise a special status for Kirkuk Province.

These demands are also those of the Chaldeans-Syriacs-Assyrians and  the Yezidis in Iraq.

Therefore, the Turkmens, the Chaldeans-Syriacs-Assyrians and the Yezidis have united themselves to work towards a common future in which each of their peoples are recognised as part of their country and will be able to preserve the existence of their ethnic, cultural and religious identities. Their aim is to maintain and contribute to the rich diversity of their country.

On 19th November 2014, the Iraqi Turkmen Front, the European Syriac Union and the Federation of Yezidi Associations will be signing a Common Declaration calling for the restoration of human rights to the non-ruling indigenous peoples of Iraq. This event which is organised in co-operation with the Christian Political Foundation for Europe will take place at the European Parliament in Brussels and will be hosted by MEP Branislav Skripek.

Prepared by:

Dr. Hassan T. Aydinli, ITF representative to EU

Merry Fitzgerald – Europe-Turkmens of Iraq Friendship Association

19th November, 2014.

Notes:

-Regarding grabbing of Turkmen lands in Iraq under the Baath regime:  after 2003 the Turkmens had access for the first time to the Iraqi Government’s official documents, the Iraqi Turkmen Front  has gathered  the official decrees regarding confiscation of lands belonging to the Turkmens in three books (in Arabic) entitled:

“Turkmanity of Kirkuk  in Iraqi and international references and Documents”

“Iraqi Turkmens Suffering in Iraqi Official Documents  1968-2003” (2 volumes).

PLEASE SEE:

Presentation first Common Declaration of the Yezidi, Chaldean-Syriac-Assyrian and Turkmen Peoples of Iraq at the European Parliament in Brussels on 19 November 2014:

http://turkmenfriendship.blogspot.be/2014/11/presentation-first-common-declaration.html

Declaration of the Turkmen, Chaldean-Syriac-Assyrian and Yazidi people of Iraq at the European Parliament in Brussels:

http://turkmenfriendship.blogspot.be/2014/11/declaration-of-turkmen-chaldean-syriac.html

Iraklı Türkmenler, Kaldaniler, Süryaniler, Asuriler ve Kürt Yezidilerin ortak bildirgesi. Hükmi varlığı olmayan kadim Irak halklarına insan haklarının düzeltilmesi için çağırı:

http://turkmenfriendship.blogspot.be/2014/11/irakl-turkmenler-kaldaniler-suryaniler.html

Türkmeneli’nden .. Türk’ün dilinden: TÜRKMENLER YENİDEN AVRUPA PARLAMENTOSUNDA:

http://turkmenfriendship.blogspot.be/2014/11/turkmenelinden-turkun-dilinden.html

DISPLACED TURKMEN CRISIS ON THE UN HUMAN RIGHTS ANNUAL CONFERENCE (video)

March 17, 2015 at 2:31 pm | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment
Tags:

DISPLACED TURKMEN CRISIS ON THE UN HUMAN RIGHTS ANNUAL CONFERENCE

GENEVA

elham abbas geneva

please see: http://tnanews.net/en/news.php?id=482

Clustered ID (Cont’d): SR right to food and on adequate housing – 17th Meeting, 28th Regular Session Human Rights Council

Clustered Interactive dialogue Item 3:
– Special Rapporteur on the right to food A/HRC/28/65
and
– Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living A/HRC/28/62
– 17th Plenary Meeting 28th Regular Session of the Human Rights Council.

Video:

Speaking for the Iraqi Turkmens: Dr. Elham Abbas – Al Khoei Foundation.   PLEASE SEE No 15 

http://webtv.un.org/watch/clustered-id-contd-sr-right-to-food-and-on-adequate-housing-17th-meeting-28th-regular-session-human-rights-council/4100879131001#full-text

LAHIB JADDO, Iraqi Turkmen artist’s photobook

March 15, 2015 at 7:47 am | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment
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Lahib Jaddo Wish

Lahib Jaddo and her family

IRAQI TURKMEN ARTIST LAHIB JADDO’S PHOTOBOOK

please click on the link below

http://www.blurb.fr/books/2742129-lahib-jaddo

Could Salahaddin Operation Be A Game Changer For Iran vs US Influence In Iraq?

March 11, 2015 at 8:15 pm | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment
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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Could Salahaddin Operation Be A Game Changer For Iran vs US Influence In Iraq?

Iraq has launched its largest security operation to date to free not only Tikrit but central Salahaddin province as well. Much has been made of the presence of militias and popular mobilization brigades that might be as much as two-thirds of the total force. Iran and Lebanese Hezbollah are playing a big role as well providing not only advisers but air cover and artillery as well. With the United States opting out of participating in this offensive due to Iran’s large presence, it could be a turning point where Tehran solidifies its place as Baghdad’s main ally in the war against the Islamic State (IS).

Iran is playing a large frontline role in the on going operation in Salahaddin. Reports are that around 1,000 members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) have been deployed there. They are not only acting as advisers, but operating artillery, rocket launchers, and flying drones. Iranian air power is also present with Su-25s flying bombing missions. 150 members of Lebanese Hezbollah are said to be present as well. Finally IRGC-Quds Force commander General Qasim Suleimani is overseeing planning too. Iranian and Hezbollah operatives have been present in previous security sweeps, but not as prominent and public as this one. In November 2014 for example, Iranian jets were filmed carrying out missions in eastern Diyala. Iranian politicians said that they considered the area a buffer zone, because it was so close to their border. That cannot be said for the current offensive, which is taking place in the middle of Iraq.

Who is notably absent from this operation is the U.S. led Coalition due to Iran’s presence. As several news reports have pointed out there is a rough division of labor between Tehran and Washington in Iraq. Where militias are heavily present Iran usually takes the lead and when the Iraqi Security Forces or peshmerga is prominent the U.S. plays a larger role. Many Pro-Iranian groups have said they do not want American support and they and Tehran are actively trying to undermine the U.S. position in the country by spreading rumors that it is supporting the Islamic State. Also given the recent history between the two countries in Iraq with the IRGC-QF leading attacks upon American forces and creating groups such as Kataib Hezbollah specifically to carry out those types of operations during the U.S. occupation there is no real incentive for them to cooperate except informally.

The Tikrit operation could play a large role in which foreign power will have a dominant role in Iraq in the future. Iran stepped in almost immediately after the fall of Mosul in the summer of 2014 committing advisers, brought in its Hezbollah allies, and provided weapons, training, and air support. The U.S. on the other hand, held out until Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki was removed from office before it joined, which is still a sore point for many Iraqis. Also given the fact that the stories of America manipulating the war and the Islamic State for its own purposes is popular amongst a range of Iraqis, not just those connected to Iran makes its absence from the current offensive in Salahaddin a threat to Washington’s position in the country. If the Tikrit offensive is successful and the U.S. never becomes involved it will undermine its position publicly and politically in an environment where its messaging about its contribution to the war is already being outplayed by Iran.

SOUCES

Barnard, Anne, “Iraq’s Drive Against ISIS Reveals Tensions With U.S.,” New York Times, 3/3/15

Erem News, “Iraq … evidence of American involvement in supporting Daash,” 3/6/15

El-Ghobashy, Tamer and Barnes, Julian, “Iran Backs Iraq Military Campaign to Reclaim Tikrit From Islamic State,” Wall Street Journal, 3/2/15

Kenner, David, “For God and Country, and Iran, Shiite militias with American blood on their hands are leading the charge to drive the Islamic State out of Tikrit. But are they doing more harm than good?” Foreign Policy, 3/5/15

Khilkhal, Shukur, “Islamic State conspiracy theories sway Iraqis,” Al Monitor, 2/27/15

Al Mustaqbal, “Washington recognizes the role of Tehran and warns of sectarian strife,” 3/4/15

Sputnik News, “US, Israeli Military Advisors Accused of Aiding ISIL Arrested in Iraq,” 3/7/15

Posted by Joel Wing at 7:19 AM

http://musingsoniraq.blogspot.be/2015/03/could-salahaddin-operation-be-game.html

Nickolay Mladenov’s speech at the UN Security Council on 17th February 2015

March 5, 2015 at 1:17 pm | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment
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nickolay mladenov

My comment:

In his Briefing Mr Nickolay Mladenov, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Iraq, mentioned all Iraq’s communities EXCEPT the Turkmens.

It is a shame that after spending so much time in Iraq as Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the UN, Mr. Nickolay Mladenov has omitted to mention the TURKMENS, who are Iraq’s third main ethnic community and the north of Iraq’s second main ethnic community…

Extract: 

“My unyielding optimism for the country however stems from the spirit of the ordinary Iraqi people— those who stood up to defend their country in the summer of last year, those who went out to vote despite car bombs and terrorist attacks, those Iraqis who do not care whether someone is Shi’ite, Sunni, Christian, Yezidi, Kurd, Arab, or any other community member.”

PLEASE SEE:

Briefing of SRSG to Iraq Nickolay Mladenov to the 7383rd meeting of the UN Security Council

New York, 17 February 2015,

Thank you, Mr. President.

I have the honour to present the second report of the Secretary-General pursuant to resolution 2169 (2014), as well as the fifth report of the Secretary-General pursuant to paragraph 4 of resolution 2107 (2013) on the issue of missing Kuwaiti and third-country-nationals, and property.

Mr. President,

As I complete my tenure as the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Iraq, to borrow a phrase, I remain a paranoid optimist. An optimist because despite the year-long security crisis, Iraq’s political, community and religious leaders have coalesced to save their country from terror. Today, more than ever, there is a growing understanding that Iraq can only move forward based on the principles of democracy, rule of law, respect for diversity and inclusivity. This understanding has been increasingly evident since the formation of a new national unity Government set on addressing many long-standing concerns of the Iraqi people. I am however also paranoid that things can go wrong — ISIL remains in control of most of Iraq’s western provinces, the fragile efforts towards unity and reconciliation need to be carefully nurtured if they are to bear fruit while the economy has been hit by falling oil prices and skyrocketing security costs.

Since its formation in September of last year, the Government has taken important steps in fulfilling its agenda. It has engaged countries in the region, all with a view to regaining the confidence of Iraq’s population in the political process and promoting stability. Whilst pursuing these objectives, Iraq’s most pressing goal remains to win back territory taken by ISIL. In this respect, the Government has taken important measures for security sector reform. The authorities have pledged to provide military and financial assistance to local leaders and tribal fighters to aid their struggle against ISIL. Since the beginning of the year, at least 4,000 Iraqis from Anbar and Ninewa have signed up as part of the popular forces, an important first step in securing local forces for the liberation of Iraq’s western provinces.

I encourage the Government to empower and quickly provide all necessary means to these local fighters as they seek to free their homes from ISIL while also supporting recovery and reconstruction. I also encourage the Council of Representatives to adopt the necessary legislation to establish the Iraqi National Guard so as to allow the provinces to take greater responsibility for their own security. In January the Government submitted to Parliament a bill to this effect.

Mr. President,

An exclusively military solution to the problem of ISIL is impossible; indeed, it would be counterproductive. I therefore welcome the consistent calls for unity by the President, the Prime Minister and the Speaker of Parliament. Any effort to achieve unity through reconciliation must be based on the Constitution and the full participation of political, religious and community leaders from across Iraq. A particular focus must be put on increasing the role and participation of women. As such, UNAMI has strongly supported the Government’s national reconciliation and social cohesion agenda.

Recently, we convened in Baghdad a roundtable on social cohesion with prominent Iraqi political, religious and civil society representatives. They discussed a number of recommendations which were presented to the Government. Subsequently, the UN convened roundtables in Karbala and Basra, bringing together civil society, community, tribal and religious leaders and scholars, during which participants reiterated the importance of strengthening social and religious cohesion, as well as rectifying divisions within Iraqi society. The United Nations Development Programme is also expanding its community reconciliation programme at the grass-root level.

In addition to these developments, the relation between the Federal Government and the Kurdistan Regional Government has been improving following their historic agreement on energy exports and revenue-sharing. Improved cooperation is also evident between the Iraqi security forces, the Peshmerga, volunteers, local communities and the forces of the anti-ISIL international coalition. This cooperation has been key in dealing with the most recent security threats, including to the city of Kirkuk, the al-Assad air base and elsewhere in the country.

Mr. President,

Despite these positive steps, the process is fraught with risks. Armed conflict and acts of terrorism continue to inflict a terrible toll on the people of Iraq. In 2014, at least 12,000 civilians were killed and over 23,000 were injured. Just in January this year alone, there were over 2,200 civilian casualties, including 790 killed and some 1,500 injured. Almost daily terrorist attacks continue to deliberately target all Iraqis, most notably from the Shi’ite community, as well as ethnic and religious minorities. The continued reports of massive human rights violations and abuses being committed by ISIL against civilians are gruesome.  ISIL has made a point of not hesitating to openly publicise their crimes committed against men, women and children. The safety and security of members of Iraq’s diverse ethnic and religious communities in areas controlled by ISIL remain of grave concern, particularly the thousands of women and children who remain in captivity.

Equally worrying is the increasing number of reports of revenge attacks committed particularly against members of the Sunni community in areas liberated from ISIL.

All of these ongoing human rights violations present a serious threat to the cohesion of Iraq.

Some of Iraq’s recent military gains in Diyala, Salah al-Din and Ninewa governorates have been marred by claims that militias have killed unarmed civilians, and intentionally destroyed property and places of worship.

It is imperative that the Government act swiftly and decisively to bring under control all armed groups that are outside of the Constitution. Failing to do this risks to undermine the much needed process of national unity and reconciliation. Political parties, however, should also show restraint in their statements in the face of such acts that are clearly aimed at destroying Iraq’s social fabric.

It is in this respect that I welcome the Government’s decision to conduct a full investigation into the alleged massacre in Barwanah, Diyala. To paraphrase Prime Minister al-Abadi — a crime is a crime, no matter who has committed it and all responsible should be held accountable. It is also encouraging that today, as we speak, Iraq’s President, Prime Minister and Speaker of Parliament are holding a joint meeting to identify measures to address these events in the recent days.

The Government faces the additional challenge of a fiscally-constrained environment. In a hallmark of success in January the Council of Representatives approved the 2015 budget. Despite very tight spending limits, due to the fall in oil revenue, spiralling security costs and a massively expanded public sector wage bill, Parliament was able to set aside some 500 million USD to help rebuild lives and livelihoods in those areas that are liberated from ISIL. The United Nations is working actively with the authorities to set up a Recovery and Reconstruction fund through which Iraq’s allies, neighbours and friends can contribute to this process as well.

Most urgently perhaps, Mr. President, the Iraqi authorities and the United Nations need to redouble our efforts at supporting over 2 million internally displaced who have been forced from their homes since January 2014. Let me recall to the Council the gravity of the situation on the ground by highlighting some numbers— 5.2 million people need humanitarian assistance in Iraq today, of them, 2.25 million are displaced and 235,000 are refugees from the country of Syria. To date the population of the Kurdistan Region has increased by some 30 percent because of the influx. Despite the generosity of local communities from across the country, one-third of IDPs in accessible areas are living in unfinished and abandoned buildings, make-shift shelters and spontaneous settlements. They are highly vulnerable and dependent on assistance to survive.

Mr. President; Honourable Members of the Security Council,

Let me sound the alarm bells:  Sixty percent of humanitarian operations in Iraq are likely to shut down or be curtailed unless funding is received in the next few weeks. The food pipeline will break in mid-May unless funding is received before the end of March. The essential medicines pipeline will break at the end of March.

The UN humanitarian country team, led by the newly appointed Humanitarian Coordinator Ms. Lise Grande, has put together a list of fast track priorities which cannot be postponed or ignored. We urgently need some 150 million USD to support IDPs, whose life-saving and protection needs are enormous, and likely to grow.

I use this opportunity to appeal to the international community at a time when Iraq is highly vulnerable and when support for the humanitarian operation will make a decisive difference in the direction of the country ahead.

Mr. President,

As I conclude my mission in Iraq I would like to use this opportunity to send also a message to the Government of Iraq. I would like to encourage the Government to move swiftly on the full implementation of the Ministerial Programme and the Political Agreement. Those documents hold the key to seeing Iraq successfully move forward. Discussions on approving the necessary legislation for a national guard should be swiftly finalised. This is important in order to empower provinces to take more responsibility for their own security; it will also help ensure that all weapons are firmly under the control of the state. Most importantly, the Government should act decisively to rebuild the armed forces on a truly national basis.

Part of this political agreement that has been the basis of the formation of the government of national unity is to grant an amnesty and to revise the Justice and Accountability Law in order to allow Iraqis who have not committed crimes under the brutal regime of Saddam Hussein to move forward with their lives and find their place in their country.

While tackling the security and political challenges, the social and economic agenda must also remain in focus. Addressing pockets of deep poverty, particularly in the South of the country, providing quality social services, providing a business climate for investment, fighting pervasive corruption, and perhaps most urgently— facilitating the return of displaced persons to their homes and rebuilding areas liberated from ISIL, all such policies are all key to social peace in Iraq.

I use this opportunity to assure the people and the Government of Iraq that the United Nations will continue to provide international assistance and expertise in this process.

Mr. President,

Let me turn now to the fifth report of the Secretary-General pursuant to paragraph 4 of resolution 2107 (2013) on the issue of missing Kuwaiti and third-country-nationals, and property.

Iraq-Kuwait relations today continue to be on the ascendant.  High-level Iraqi visits and the results of the fourth Joint Ministerial Committee meeting are very encouraging. Kuwait’s consulates in Basra and Erbil, when opened, will take Iraq-Kuwait relations to the next level.

I wish that I could report similar progress to the Council on the missing Kuwaitis and Kuwaiti national archives since the last report.

The Kuwaiti Government and the people of Kuwait are understandably disappointed that nothing tangible has been achieved for many years now. UNAMI shares this disappointment. We have placed much emphasis on witnesses and continue to emphasise that the most modern scientific advances and technology should be utilised. A UNAMI identified witness travelled recently to Kuwait. During the visit, for which UNAMI and the Iraqi Government had worked hard, regrettably did not yield anything substantial. Time remains our most formidable foe. Our team is working to reach another witness, who has been overseas and who Kuwait believes holds the key to identifying a gravesite which possibly contains as many as 180 mortal remains.

Let me assure the Council and the families of the Kuwaiti missing persons that the UN will continue to do its utmost to fulfil its mandate. Nonetheless, the key to achieving tangible progress is primarily in the hands of the parties themselves. The goodwill between Kuwait and Iraq is at its highest since 1990. I believe that this is a very opportune moment for their respective leaderships to come together on this important humanitarian issue, review efforts so far and decide on a new course of action. Resources, technology and a fresh approach may all be required.  UNAMI stands as always ready to support this process.

Mr. President,

As I conclude my tenure as the Secretary-General’s Special Representative to Iraq, let me say on a more personal level how humbled I have been by the people of Iraq. For decades they have lived with dictatorship, with conflict and with terrorism, yet they persist in their determination to build a democratic state. Generations have been scarred and brought up in fear— fear of oppression, fear for their future, fear for their lives. Iraqi society has been deeply scarred and will take a long time to heal. But the medicine is to look forward to unity and reconciliation, not to turn to the failed policies of the past.

ISIL, Mr. President, flourishes when Iraq is weak and Iraq is weak when it is divided by sectarian politics, when political patronage overtakes national loyalty.

My unyielding optimism for the country however stems from the spirit of the ordinary Iraqi people— those who stood up to defend their country in the summer of last year, those who went out to vote despite car bombs and terrorist attacks, those Iraqis who do not care whether someone is Shi’ite, Sunni, Christian, Yezidi, Kurd, Arab, or any other community member. It is the overwhelming majority of ordinary Iraqis who have no foreign country to flee to, no foreign passport to rely on. These are the women and men who will build the new Iraq. And what we, in the international community, can and must do is to help them succeed.

We must support them in building democracy, without which the majority of Iraqis will not feel secure, nor will their human rights be protected.

We must work with them to achieve balance among their diverse communities inside the country, because without balance, violence and extremism will persist.

We must assist them in ensuring justice— not reprisal, for the crimes of the past and the violations of today.

And finally— we must grant the people of Iraq the respect and dignity that they deserve.

This is the noble mission of the United Nations in Iraq.

Honourable members of the Security Council,

Allow me to thank your governments and the Secretary-General for the unity that you have shown in supporting Iraq, for the unyielding support for UNAMI, and for the trust you have placed in me to lead this difficult mission.

I want to express my gratitude to my colleagues in the Mission, in the Secretariat and in the UN country team for their commitment, bravery and hard work throughout the years.

I would like to thank the Government and the people of Iraq for the hospitality that they have extended to me, for their friendship and for their daily courage to never give up in the face of terror.

Mr. President,

It has been an honour serving as the Secretary-General’s Representative for Iraq.

Thank you.

Briefing of SRSG to Iraq Nickolay Mladenov to the 7383rd meeting of the UN Security Council

http://uniraq.org/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=3310:briefing-of-srsg-to-iraq-nickolay-mladenov-to-the-7383rd-meeting-of-the-un-security-council&Itemid=606&lang=en

Continue Reading Nickolay Mladenov’s speech at the UN Security Council on 17th February 2015…

ITF EU Representative was invited to the Press Conference of the European Syriac Union at Brussels on 3rd March 2015

March 5, 2015 at 11:44 am | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment
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DSC_1449

Mr. Leo Van Doesburg, Director for European Affairs & Policy Advising
Mr. Johannes de Jong, Manager European Christian Political Foundation
Ms. Rima Tüzün, Head of Foreign Affairs European Syriac Union
Dr. Hassan Aydinli, Iraqi Turkmen Front EU representative
Photo taken at Press Club Brussels Europe.

ITF EU representative Dr. Hassan Aydinli was invited to the Press Conference organized by the European Syriac Union, representing the Chaldean-Syriac-Assyrians in the Middle East to the EU.

At this press conference the European Syriac Union called the EU Member States to support the Syriac-Assyrian political and military forces in Syria (Syriac Military Council) and Iraq (Nineveh Plain Forces) as well as their Kurdish, Yezidi and Turkmen allies.

The ESU provided information on the armed resistanc by the Syriac-Assyrian Christians and the need to include this rightful self-defense in the allied strategy.

On this occasion ITF EU Representative issued the following Press Release:

PRESS RELEASE

Bombshell: British Iraq inquiry in flames

March 5, 2015 at 11:29 am | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment
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Bombshell: British Iraq inquiry in flames

 05.03.2015

If ever there was a geo-political bombshell, this is it. Twelve years after the illegal and inhumane invasion of Iraq based on lies, fabrication and downright arrogance, 6 years after the launch of the Chilcot inquiry, comes today the following allegation. 

For those who have followed the Iraq story, a must read.

HUMAN RIGHTS LAW RULES CHILCOT INQUIRY INVALID

SIR LAWRENCE FREEDMAN IS NOT IMPARTIAL

To Sir Richard Ottaway,

Chair of Parliamentary Foreign Affairs Committee

House of Commons

SW1A OAA

28 FEB 2015

Dear Sir,

Following the meeting of the Foreign Affairs Committee on 4th Feb 2015 concerning the Chilcott Inquiry, which was unsatisfactory in not establishing a completion date, I shall be grateful if you will investigate a much graver matter concerning the validity of the Inquiry as a whole. That is its failure to be impartial within European Human Rights Law.

Sir Lawrence Freedman was appointed Privy Councilor as Adviser to PM Tony Blair on Foreign Affairs, in the period from 1997-2007. He has also formed a company with the MOD to train the military and businesses in military strategy. I contend that these positions are incompatible with his membership of the Chilcot Inquiry.

At 9 am on the 18th of January 2010, one hour before Jonathan Powell was due to give evidence to the Chilcot Inquiry, Sir John Chilcot received the following letter from Sir Laurence Freedman,

“Jonathan Powell will be giving evidence today. I thought it would be helpful to set out, for the record, my involvement in Prime Minister Tony Blair’s speech, delivered to the Economic Club of Chicago on 24 April 1999 on ‘The doctrine of the International Community.

I was asked by Jonathan Powell to submit ideas for this speech on about 12 April 1999 and I submitted the attached memo on April 16th. I believe I discussed it with Jonathan Powell early the following week, but I made no more submissions.”

Now of these submissions there were, in fact, twelve paragraphs included in Blair’s speech verbatim.

One paragraph of the memo of the suggestions from Professor Freedman was as follows:-

“Many of our problems have been caused by two dangerous and ruthless men – Saddam Hussein and Slobodan Milosevich. Both have been prepared to wage vicious campaigns against sections of their own community, and Saddam Hussein even occupied a neighboring country. As a result of these destructive policies both have brought calamity on their own peoples. Instead of enjoying its oil wealth Iraq has been reduced to poverty, with political life stultified through fear.”

The following are extracts from ‘THE BLAIR DOCTRINE’ delivered by Blair to the Chicago Economic Club on April 22 1999,

” Many of our problems have been caused by two dangerous and ruthless men – Saddam Hussein and Slobodan. Both have been prepared to wage vicious campaigns against sections of their own community, and Saddam Hussein even occupied a neighboring country. As a result of these destructive policies both have brought calamity on their own peoples. Instead of enjoying its oil wealth Iraq has been reduced to poverty, with political life stultified through fear.”

The wording, in turn, is reminiscent of statements two years earlier to be found in The Project for a New American Century, PNAC, written by Wolfowitz, Perle, Rumsfeld, Bolton, and Cheney. (All committed zionists, as is Freedman.) Freedman must have been aware of the PNAC, and may, as a war strategist, have met its authors and even contributed to its ideas, if not the actual words. Recently, in 2010, he did indeed share a conference platform with Richard Perle, again compromising his role as an impartial member of the Chilcot Inquiry during its progress from 20069 and 2015.

The Blair Doctrine was delivered by Blair in Chicago two years before Bush was elected as President, and eleven months before 9/11. Blair had of course been groomed in America as a young, charismatic, potential leader in the late 1980s and early 1990s with Fulbright International Travel Scholarships, along with Karzai and Gordon Brown.( Tony Benn was convinced Blair was a CIA instrument in smashing the Labour party.) The PNAC push to deal with Saddam Hussein had come long before Bush was elected President. As Sir Christopher Meyer said to the Chilcot Inquiry , Blair was ” a firm believer” in removing Saddam Hussein long before 9/11. In Blair’s own words …”I had a vision … greater than Iraq , greater than the American Alliance, greater than the greatness of our history.” There was no stopping him . ( cf ” A Journey “p 500 – 501).

Sir Jeremy Greenstock, who gave evidence to the Chilcot Inquiry on its second day, closed his remarks as he was leaving, ” in our conversations ( a clever word) I was surprised you did not mention Israel.” Certainly the PNAC authors were very concerned to stop Saddam paying the families of Palestinian suicide bombers, as was Freedman.

The second part of my letter deals with the possible deception by Chilcot himself, and, according to European Human Rights Law, the lack of validity of the Inquiry because it can not be considered impartial. This lack of validity will cause extreme distress for Military Families Against War, as it is contrary to the protection given by European Human Rights Law to enable those affected to be confident that they can obtain an unbiased hearing. Rose Gentle will be staggered that she will never obtain justice for her dead son because the Chilcot Inquiry is rubbish. Nor will all the Iraqis ever be compensated whose relatives and children have been killed, maimed and psychologically damaged in the wreckage of a country in civil war. The fact that the barbarian acts of Lindsey England with her cigarette pointing at the penises of naked Iraqis at Abu Ghraib or the sexual torture ( “work them hard”) in Camp Bread Basket will never be exposed in the International Criminal Court along with The Leaders of the war ( whose actions lead to all others), will be a stimulus to continuous violence in the future, as the Joint Intelligence Committee prophesied in the year 2000.

When in a letter of of 3 March 2011 I challenged Sir John about the Freedman Letter, his secretary replied that he had known about this “a long time before”. “and had full confidence in the balance of his team”.

But how long before ? (Cicero in a speech in praise of Pompey used this same legal ambiguity) Was it 24 hours before? Was it written in panic ?

Was it 2 months before? or at the commencement of his Inquiry in Nov 2009?

Now if it was at the commencement of the Inquiry how was Chilcot able to say, with a straight face, that :- “We come to this task with open minds and a commitment to review the evidence objectively. Each member of the committee is independent and non-partisan. We are determined to be thorough, rigorous, fair and frank to enable us to form impartial and evidence-based judgements on all aspects of the issues, including the arguments about the legality of the conflict.”

Sir John also made clear that the Inquiry team would be critical if they felt it necessary.

“The Inquiry is not a court of law and nobody is on trial,” he said. “But I want to make something absolutely clear. This Committee will not shy away from making criticism. If we find that mistakes were made, that there were issues which could have been dealt with better, we will say so frankly.”

“We are all committed to ensuring that our proceedings are as open as possible because we recognise that is one of the ways in which the public can have confidence in the integrity and independence of the inquiry process.

How was he able to allow the official Inquiry Biography of Freedman, (which I quote below) still to omit in 2009, and still go on omitting in 2015, without alteration, the fact that Sir Lawrence Freedman was Foreign Affairs Policy Adviser to Blair between 1997 and 2007.

Official Chilcot Inquiry Biography Freedman

Sir Lawrence Freedman has been Professor of War Studies at King’s College London since 1982. He became head of the School of Social Science and Public Policy at King’s in 2000 and was appointed Vice-Principal in 2003.

He was educated at Whitley Bay Grammar School and the Universities of Manchester, York and Oxford. Before joining King’s he held research appointments at Nuffield College Oxford, IISS and the Royal Institute of International Affairs. He was appointed Official Historian of the Falklands Campaign in 1997.

Professor Freedman has written extensively on nuclear strategy and the cold war, as well as commentating regularly on contemporary security issues. Among his books are Kennedy’s Wars: Berlin, Cuba, Laos and Vietnam (2000), The Evolution of Nuclear Strategy (3rd edition 2004), Deterrence (2005), the two volume Official History of the Falklands Campaign (second edition 2007) and an Adelphi Paper on The Transformation in Strategic Affairs (2004). A Choice of Enemies: America confronts the Middle East, won the 2009 Lionel Gelber Prize and Duke of Westminster Medal for Military Literature. His most recent book is Strategy: A History (2013).

If it was at the commencement in Nov 2009 that Chilcot knew of Freedman’s role in composing Blair’s 1999 speech, why was the Official website Biography not updated to read more accurately as follows :-

Sir Lawrence Freedman was appointed a Privy Councilor in 2009 on account of his services

as Foreign Affairs advisor to PM Tony Blair from 1997 to 2007. Freedman contributed twelve crucial paragraphs, including removing Saddam Hussein, to “The Blair Doctrine” delivered to The Chicago Economic Club in April 1999, a year and a half before 9/11.

Freedman is closely associated with the authors of the Project for the New American Century of 1998. He has also established a Company with the MOD to train military and businesses in military strategy

I understand that while the Chilcot Inquiry has been in progress Freedman has been Professor of War Studies at Kings College London and has recently supervised a Phd study at Exeter on Israeli counter terrorist strategy and IDF War strategy. He has written a number of Papers on Israeli IDF anti terrorist strategy. He has written papers on the value of nuclear deterrence. He has set up a private company Simulstat with close association with the MOD teaching strategy to military and business at Cranfield and Shrivenham.. Such a close association with the MOD would make it hard for him to be critical of the MOD .

As Professor of War Studies he must know the Nuremberg Protocols of 1946 and the 40 Blue Books produced from Courtroom 600 Nuremberg and that planning and executing an aggressive war was considered “the supreme international crime of all “punishable by death.

In a public hearing it would only be human that Sir Lawrence would wish to distance himself from his master Tony Blair and the strategy of regime change, which as Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said “he had advised the Prime Minister on numerous occasions was palpably illegal”.

One begins to wonder if, in Sir Lawrence Freedman, one is not dealing with Mephistopheles himself . He has managed to inveigle himself into the position of being both Judge and Jury of his own actions, and to manipulate as a puppet a man less clever than himself. We will never know the truth of the first week of Shock and Awe, how little Ali’s burnt body came to be scarred with with charcoal flash marks like Hiroshima plutonium. We will never know of the mother in Fallujah staring at her beautiful child with a huge cancer on her face and of mothers, giving birth to babies with one eye, and their innards carried outside their bodies, whether the MOD knew all along that the munitions used with depleted uranium and plutonium would cause these tragedies, because Freedman himself was advocating the use of nuclear weapons and was himself negotiating with the MOD to form a company from which he would benefit. We do not know if Freedman himself copied terms such as Shock and Awe ( Sturm und Drang ) and |Storm Shadow Missiles” (Sturmtruppen ) |from Nazi Germany because the whole Inquiry is rotten to the core . We will not know if Freedman is in touch with Blair’s lawyers extending the maxwellisation Programe by deceit ad infinitum..

I therefore request that you investigate the impartiality of Sir Lawrence Freedman and whether the Chilcot Inquiry should quickly be brought to a close as not complying with European Human Rights Law. Maxwellisation could clearly go on for a very long time indeed without a conclusion. I suggest that on the morning of Jonathan Powell’s appearance Freedman must have been very worried indeed that the cat might have come out of the bag. Perhaps the Committee was instructed by Chilcot to steer clear of these speeches when questioning Powell.

I shall be pleased to forward to you copies of the many letters I have received from Sir John’s staff.

While writing this letter to you , Bassim an Iraqi Sheik, to whom I tried to teach English , lost his nephew and youngest brother who were killed in Baghdad. He has now lost all the male members of his family, since his brother was killed, while hooded, by the Americans , and his brother in law by the Shia Militia. You could never meet a kinder or more intelligent man than Bassim. I dedicate this letter to him.

Yours sincerely.

Nicholas Wood . Secretary to the Submission of 19 Nov 2009

Secretary to the Letter from Privy Councillor Tony Benn to Kofi Anan 2003

\Secretary to The Blair War Crimes Foundation.

cc Mrs Rose Gentle, Military Families Against War .

ccThe Editor Private Eye.

International Cooperation Against Foreign Terrorist Fighters: The Experience of Turkey

March 4, 2015 at 10:52 am | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment
Tags:

http://www.orsam.org.tr/en/enUploads/Article/Files/2015219_policybrief22ing.pdf

International Cooperation Against Foreign Terrorist Fighters: The Experience

of Turkey

Assoc. Prof. Haldun Yalçınkaya, ORSAM Coordinator for Security

Studies. TOBB ETU

ORSAM has released the new issue of ORSAM Review of Regional Affairs.
This brief by Dr. Haldun Yalçınkaya, coordinator for ORSAM Security Studies
program and head of International Relations Department at TOBB-ETÜ,
the foreign terrorist fighter phenomenon from Turkey’s angle. The brief
highlights the importance of international cooperation in the prevention of
FTF travels. It also studies the two instruments Turkey has developed to
prevent FTF travels: a no-entry list and Risk Analysis Groups. The brief
also discusses the recently released data on no-entry lists and deportations,
based on geographic distribution. It concludes by underlining that FTF
recruitment and travel is a cycle and intervention at any stage requires
an effective international cooperation.

The Turkish version:

Full text   
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