Police have raided several pro-Kurdish associations and homes of Kurdish activists in France in the early hours of Tuesday morning. At least ten people were reportedly detained during police raids in Marseille and Paris.
French police raided at least 6 houses along with an association building and a market in Marseille.
During the operations in Marseille, police reportedly broke down the doors of the Democratic Kurdish Community Centre. A demonstration in protest against the police operation was held in Marseille.
Simultanous raids also targeted Kurdish activists in the French capital, Paris.
A total of at least 10 people were reportedly detained during the raids in both cities. French authorities shared an official statement regarding the grounds of detentions.
‘Timing’ of the operations
The operations against Kurdish activists and pro-Kurdish associations came right before France 5, a French public TV channel, broadcast on Tuesday 23 March evening a special program on France-Turkey relations and a documentary entitled “Erdoğan: The Sultan who defies Europe,” ahead of the 25-26 March European Council summit on EU-Turkey relations.
As announced by Le Figaro in its edition of 22 March, an interview with the French head of state Emmanuel Macron will be broadcast on Tuesday on France 5 during a special broadcast devoted to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
The timing of the operations also indicate the increasing pressure on the Kurdish diaspora in Europe over the Turkey’s new attempt to shut down the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP).