Peace & Democracy Conference in Europe to open on 29 June

ANF – BRUSSELS 26.06.2013 – The Peace and Democracy Conference in Europe, the 3rd conference to debate and decide on a working plan for the democratization of Turkey and the resolution of the Kurdish question, will be held on 29-30 June 2013 in Brussels.

The conference has been organized as part of the four conferences Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan proposed as a necessity for the ongoing process of talks aimed at a peaceful and democratic solution to the Kurdish question. Öcalan said the conferences were of importance in terms of highlighting the opinions and proposals of all relevant circles about the resolution process. The first two Peace and Democracy conferences were held on 25-26 May in Ankara and 15-16 June in Amed (Diyarbakır). Following the conference in Brussels, the fourth one will take place in Hewler in the coming months.

Participants invited to the conference include 30 institutions and organizations, various ethnic and religious groups as well as prominent personalities from Turkey and North Kurdistan who live in Europe. The conference is expected to be attended by some 350 participants representing 60 organizations, associations and a great number of individual VIPs from many European countries.

A committee consisting of 14 representatives of various associations and organizations has carried out the preparations for the conference and held talks with all relevant circles in Europe.

The drafting committee, involving representatives of the national, religious, gender based, and cultural organizations, issued a call to all the ancient ethnic peoples of Anatolia and Mesopotamia now living in Europe, namely Arabs, Armenians, Assyrian-Syriacs, Circassians, Greeks, Kurds, Laz, Roms, Turks, and those of repressed beliefs: Alevi, Christian, Ezidi, Jewish, Muslim, to support the Peace and Democracy Conference where common ideas will be discussed and a programme will be developed that reflects the democratic aspirations and demands of all the oppressed peoples.

The committee called on all these groups to gather at the conference for founding together an equitable and free life with their proper identities, without oppressing and being oppressed. “During the historic process that we are going through, an opportunity for a lasting peace has been created that lays the foundation for a free and democratic future for all our peoples. This period marks a turning point for the future of everyone. The peoples living in Europe who can trace their origins to Kurdistan and Turkey are a fundamental part of this process. All the peoples and religious groups who have suffered massacres, exile and have been cut off from their lands as a result of the repressive policies of the Turkish Republic must be involved in this process and put forward their own demands”, the committee underlined.

The first session on the first day of the conference will include presentations about the outcomes of the Ankara Conference, of the Amed Conference and of the 3. Ankara Great Alevi Congress.

The second session on the same day will handle the question “What sort of Turkey does the people of Turkey and Kurdistan living in Europe want?”. It will witness discussions on the designation of the problem and resolution suggestions about the following points;

a) the problems and suggestions of ethnic and belief identities living in the Europe

b) the reasons of exiles and their problems and their return projects

c) the problems originated from Turkish State of Migrant workers, the labour exploitation and suggestions

d) the unique problems originated from Turkish State of Migrant Women and Youths and suggestions

e) the negative roles and demands of EU and EU countries with the politics of Turkey

The third session on the second day will debate the role that people living across Europe and originated from Turkey and Kurdistan might play while building the Democracy and Peace process, including discussions and suggestions around

a) the active participation of all peoples and organisations living across Europe and originated from Turkey and Kurdistan to the Democracy and Peace process,

b) what kind of diplomatic and lobby activities must be conducted to create awareness in European Public and Politics to the Democracy and Peace process (Discussions and suggestions to adopt global democratic principals and agreements to Turkey)

The fourth session will handle discussions and decisions towards organisation methods for building the future and mutual struggle as well as planning and decision drafts.

The last session will include final declaration and closing.

The institutions and individuals that called for the conference are Armenians from Dersim, Association of Protecting Laz Language and Culture (LAGEBURA), Assyrian-Syriac Federation in Germany and Central Europe, Communist Party of Kürdistan, Confederation of  Oppressed Migrants in Europe (Aveg-Kon), Confederation of Alevis Unions in Europe, Confederation of Kurdish Associations in Europe (KON-KURD), Europe Karerli Association in Europe, European Federation of Pontus Greeks, European Peace Assembly, European Platform of Exiles, Federation of Democratic Alevis (FEDA), Federation of Democratic Workers Associations, Federation of Ezidi Associations, Federation of Kurdish Associations in Germany (YEK-KOM), Freedom and Solidarity Party (ÖDP Europe), Group of Ezidi Scholars, Human Rights Association Germany-Turkey  (TÜDAY), Inititative of Freedom to Öcalan, Islam Party of Kürdistan, Journalists’ Union of Kürdistan, Karakoçan Association in Europe, Kurdish Institute, Kurdish Women Movement in Europe,Kurdistan Federation of Islam Community, Peace Inititative of Kurdish and Turkish Women -Stockholm, Revolutionary Proletariat (A World to be Lived), Socialist New Establishment Party,Sweden Peace Assembly, Union of Socialist Women, Derwich Ferho (Brussels Kurdish Institute),Doğan Özgüden (Journalist), Günay Aslan (Journalist-Writer), İ. Metin Ayçiçek (Journalist-Writer), İnci Tuğsavul (Journalist), Mahmut Şakar (Lawyer, MAF-DAD), Murat Çakır (Journalist-Writer), Mustafa Ayrancı (The Union of Workers of Turkey in Netherlands), Remzi Kartal (President of Kongra-Gel), Teslim Töre (Politician), Zeynel Özen (Politician) and Zübeyir Aydar (Member of KCK Executive Council).