Greens Senator David Shoebridge has urged the Australian government to call on the Turkish and Iranian governments to stop their attacks on Kurdish communities in a speech on 6 February, the first sitting day of the Australian Parliament for 2024.
“In recent months, Iran and Turkey have stepped up their attacks on Kurdish communities across the Middle East.
“In December last year, Turkey carried out devastating air strikes in north-east Syria targeting civilian service facilities and infrastructure, causing extensive damage and worsening the fragile humanitarian situation in the region.
“These attacks followed a five-day air strike in October, where Turkey literally obliterated electricity, gas and oil facilities in the same region. Many Kurds were killed and injured.
“It’s not just Turkey that is targeting Kurds; Iran is also stepping up attacks on Kurds. In January 2024, four Kurdish Iranians were executed after a secret trial conducted by the Iranian regime. They were denied their right to appeal the death sentence and forced to accept a government lawyer to represent them.
“These deaths are the most recent killings of Kurdish people by the Iranian regime for the crime of calling for Kurdish self-determination, calling for human rights and calling for cultural rights. In Iran, the Kurds’ fellow oppressed peoples, most prominently the women of Iran, have proven through the Jin, Jiyan, Azadi/Women, Life, Freedom resistance movement that acts of violence such as executions, arrests, torture or disappearances will not defeat them, as brutal as those things are,” the Senator said.
“While the world is focused on the genocide in Gaza and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Turkey and Iran face minimal to no scrutiny for their crimes against the Kurdish peoples. When will Australia say enough is enough? Enough of the violence; enough of the harm!
“Until we make a stand against this kind of violence, until we stand up for international human rights regardless of where those breaches happen, it will continue to grow,” he added.
Reported by Peter Boyle