STUC condemns harassment of Kurdish community

STUC condemns harassment of Kurdish community

The 122nd annual Scottish Trade Union Congress (STUC), which ran from 15-17 April 2019 and represents 37 trade unions and more than 540,000 people across Scotland discussed a motion on the alleged police harassment of the Kurdish community in Scotland. “Stop criminalising the Kurdish community” The motion condemns raids conducted on the homes of members of the Kurdish community in Scotland and the Kurdish community centre in Edinburgh by Police Scotland. Periodic early-morning raids on members of the Kurdish community have been conducted by Police Scotland since 2016, where badges, flags, and scarves featuring the Kurdish colours red, green, and…
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Scottish trade unions add their voice to Kurdish solidarity

Scottish trade unions add their voice to Kurdish solidarity

Momentum is building in the trade union movement as the Scottish Trade Unions Councils 122nd annual congress agrees on a motion of solidarity with the Kurdish hunger strikers and their demands for the release of Abdullah Öcalan. Scottish trade unions support Imam In her opening remarks to the conference, President of the STUC Lynne Henderson called for support for Imam Sis and his demand for the release of Abdullah Öcalan. Newport resident and lifelong campaigner against racism, Imam is one of the thousands of hunger strikers taking extraordinary measures to demand that Turkey obey its own and international law and…
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Welsh Trade Union stand with Imam and the Kurdish struggle

Welsh Trade Union stand with Imam and the Kurdish struggle

The Welsh trade union movement has a long and proud history of demonstrating solidarity with workers and trade unionists internationally fighting for democracy, equality, justice and freedom. It is against this backdrop that we have worked with our friends across the labour social justice movement, including the People’s Assembly, to lobby our Welsh Assembly, Labour and Plaid members to support a motion, criticising the treatment of Abdullah Ocalan, calling for an ending of the enforced solitary confinement of a political prisoner, stating the imprisonment was “under conditions which are understood to contravene the Turkish state’s legal obligations in relations to…
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Cardiff rally shows the strength of Welsh solidarity with Kurdish cause

Cardiff rally shows the strength of Welsh solidarity with Kurdish cause

Hundreds attended a Cardiff rally in support of the Kurdish hunger strikers worldwide and Imam Sis in particular. Imam is a beloved and well-respected anti-racism campaigner based in South Wales who has now been on hunger strike for over 110 days. Proud history of internationalism On Sunday the 7th April 2019, senior trade unionists, politicians and human rights lawyers shared a platform to express their solidarity with the Kurdish hunger strikers. Speakers at the march included Nejla Ezdan from the Kurdish Women’s Movement, Shavannah Taj from the PCS Union, Allison Hulmes - National Director of BASW Cymru, Memod Aksoy from…
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A message of solidarity for Margaret Owen OBE

A message of solidarity for Margaret Owen OBE

Senior trade unionist and co-chair of the Freedom for Ocalan committee, Christine Blower, has written to Margaret Owen OBE to express her solidarity with Margaret's hunger strike. Margaret, at time of writing, is on a week-long hunger strike to raise awareness of the wave of irreversible hunger strikes taking place internationally. The hunger strikers are protesting Turkey's continued and illegal isolation of imprisoned Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan who is now in his 20th year of extreme isolation on Imrali Island. The hunger strikers demands to end Öcalans isolation are humane and a legal requirement under Turkish and international law and…
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Happy Birthday Apo

Happy Birthday Apo

Today will mark the 70th Birthday of imprisoned Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan. On this day and on behalf of UK Trade Union movement, The Freedom for Öcalan campaign restates a commitment to securing Mr Öcalans release and to justice for the Kurdish people. As we reflect on the year ahead, Mr Öcalans 20th in extreme isolation on Imrali prison island and the 8th year his legal team have been denied access to him, we acknowledge the profound positive impact his ideas and writings have had on the region. The ideas of Abdullah Öcalan; democracy, fair representation, the liberation of women…
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Wales leads international solidarity with Öcalan

Wales leads international solidarity with Öcalan

The Welsh Assembly has taken a historic stance in support of Newport resident and hunger striker Imam Sis and his calls for international solidarity and action on the isolation of Kurdish political prisoner Abdullah Öcalan. Welsh trade unions including Unite Youth Wales, UNISON Cardiff County, FBU Wales, PCS and IWW Cymru campaigned with precision and passion to support the motion raised by Plaid Cymru. Without the grassroots activity of rank and file trade unionists and activists applying pressure on AM's the motion in support of Imams demands might not have passed. The Council of Europe raises concerns Imam was himself…
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Manuel Cortes and Tony Burke join call for meeting with European Council

Manuel Cortes and Tony Burke join call for meeting with European Council

Leading trade unionists, legal professionals, activists, actors, filmmakers and a former finance minister are calling for an urgent meeting with the European Council in order for the Committee for the Prevention of Torture to reopen its investigation of Imrali Island. Turkey breaking own laws The group which included the actor Maxine Peake and former finance minister for Iceland Ögmundur Jónasson formed an international peace delegation in February 2019 with the intention of visiting Imrali Island with Abdullah Ocalan's legal team. The visit, which is Mr Ocalan's legal right under Turkish and international law, would have been the first since 2011.…
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Jeremy Corbyn calls for lawyers to be allowed to visit Öcalan

Jeremy Corbyn calls for lawyers to be allowed to visit Öcalan

NEWPORT (WALES) On 30 March Jeremy Corbyn, the Leader of the Labour Party, met with activists working closely with Imam Sis, a Kurdish hunger striker on day 104 (since 17 Dec 2018) protesting the isolation of imprisoned Kurdish leader, Abdullah Öcalan. The activists have also been working with three Kurdish activists in London who have been on hunger strike since 14 March 2019. Corbyn expressed sympathy with the hunger strikers and agreed to raise the issue with the Foreign Secretary as well as to inform the Labour Shadow Cabinet on the matter. He expressed a will to visit the three…
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Will Wales be the first nation to show solidarity with Kurdish hunger strikers?

Will Wales be the first nation to show solidarity with Kurdish hunger strikers?

Hunger strikers enter life-threatening phase as Plaid Cymru tabled debate proposes the Welsh Government, on behalf of the National Assembly for Wales, write to the Committee for the Prevention of Torture calling on them to visit Imrali Prison to assess the conditions of Abdullah Öcalan, the Kurdish leader. Solidarity with the Kurdish community A Kurdish-Welshman from Newport has entered day 94 of his hunger strike as the Senedd prepares to vote on solidarity with the Kurdish community. If passed, the motion would make Wales the first nation worldwide through its government and Parliament to show its solidarity with the Kurdish…
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