MEP Elmar Brok, Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the European Parliament received a joint delegation representing the Turkmen, Chaldean-Syriac-Assyrian and Yazidi peoples of Iraq at his office at the EU Parliament on 4th November 2014.
The delegation was composed of:
– Dr. Hassan Aydinli, Iraqi Turkmen Front EU representative and Ms. Merry Fitzgerald, President of Europe-Iraqi Turkmens Friendships Association, representing the Turkmens.
-Mr. Lahdo Hobil, President of the European Syriac Union andMs. Rima Tüzün, ESU Head of Foreign Affairs, representing the Chaldean-Syriac-Assyrians.
– Mr. Fikret Igrek, Head of Yezidis Foreign Affairs in Europe, representing the Yezidis of Iraq.
The delegation had requested an urgent appointment with Mr. Elmar Brok in order to inform him personally –as an MEP and influential member of the largest political group in the European Parliament (EPP) as well as in his capacity of Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the European Parliament – of the dire situation and the bleak future facing the Turkmen, the Chaldean, Syriac, Assyrian and Yazidi peoples living in the north of Iraq, caused by the terrorist group ISIS, following their attacks on Mosul city on 10th June 2014, immediately followed by planned targeted attacks on towns and villages inhabited by and belonging to these non ruling indigenous peoples of Iraq, where ISIS caused absolute chaos and devastation, terrorising the people, violating their dignity and their human rights, committing crimes against humanity: mass killings, rapes, kidnappings, lootings, ethnically cleansing and forcing these defenceless peoples to flee from their towns and villages.
A joint declaration prepared earlier by the members of the delegation was presented to Mr. Elmar Brok at this meeting, asking for his support and that of the European Union to this declaration which is essentially calling for the restoration of human rights to the non-ruling indigenous peoples of Iraq.
Each member of the delegation introduced him/herself to Mr. Elmar Brok and made a brief presentation of the political organizations they represent and of their people’s history and actual situation in Iraq, saying that each of their peoples has suffered under the fact that their existence has not been adequately recognized in Iraq and in the international community for many decades. That they have all experienced discrimination, persecution and ethnic and cultural cleansing due to this lack of adequate recognition of their ethnic, cultural and religious identity and the right to be as they are in their country, Iraq.
The Turkmens, Chaldean-Syriac-Assyrians and Yazidiswho have now been driven from their homelands in Iraq by ISIS have united themselves to work towards a common future in which each of their peoples are recognised as part of their country (Iraq) and will be able to preserve the existence of their ethnic, cultural and religious identities. They declare that it is their aim to maintain and contribute to the rich diversity of their land and to support in this effort those peoples who are their neighbours and who share the same wish for a common peaceful future.
Dr. Aydinli informed MEP Mr. Brok that since 10th June 2014, ISIS has attacked several Turkmen towns and villages, in the provinces of Mosul, Kirkuk, Salaheddin and Diyala. ISIS terrorists have attacked the Turkmen localities of Tal Afer, Beshir/Taza, Biravcili, Kara Naz, Chardaghli, Bastamli, Amerli, Kifri, Kara Tepe, Jalawla, Salman beg, and many villages belonging to the Turkmen Bayat tribes of Turzhurmatu district, killing over 500 innocent Turkmens and causing the displacement of more than 350.000 Turkmens.
The displaced Turkmens are living in very dire conditions and they are now scattered all over Iraq.
As an example of Turkmens’ sufferings, Dr. Aydinli mentioned the tragedy of his native village, Bashir, in Kirkuk Province, which was attacked by ISIS, saying that all the members of his family together with the 1.200 families living in the village had been obliged to flee to save their lives after defending their village against ISIS during three days. Unfortunately, they were overwhelmed by the heavily armed and better trained ISIS terrorists and 59 villagers were killed. ISIS is now occupying the village and they have destroyed most of the houses.
At the end of the meeting Dr. Aydinli handed a copy of Mr. Erşat Hürmüzlu’s book ‘The Turkmen Reality in Iraq‘ and a copy of Dr. Suphi Saatçi’s book : ‘The Urban Fabric and Traditional Houses of KIRKUK‘ to MEP Elmar Brok who thanked him for this.