Statement of Delegation for Peace and Freedom

We, as a delegation from all over Europe, have come to Kurdistan aiming for peace and freedom. Politicians, academics, human rights activists, syndicalists, journalists, feminists and ecologists from over ten countries wanted to get direct impressions of the situation and stand up to end the war and destruction. With 150 persons we wanted to establish a dialogue with the members of parliament of all parties and visit non-governmental organizations in order to contribute to a dialogue between the different Kurdish political actors.

The invasion of the Turkish military violating international laws is without doubt unacceptable. However, we are sadly witnessing that the international community of states remains inactive against this, and does not insist on the compliance with the international codes and human rights.

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First-hand observations from areas in South Kurdistan which are attacked by Turkey

On the night of April 23, 2021, at around 9:00 p.m. the areas Metina, Zap and Avasin – in total about 100 kms long and 40 kms deep – in South Kurdistan (North Iraq) became the target of unprecedented Turkish air attacks. This area is located between the Khabour river in the west and Basyan River in the east. The Turkish drones had intensified their flights over the area from a week before. Then came the fighter jet attacks at that night. There were tens of jets in the air, each bombing the mountains, cliffs, forests, valleys time and time again. This lasted for an hour. After that came the artillery and rockets. Hundreds of artillery shells were fired at the area. Every target hit by the fighter jets was hit again by artillery shells. After this barrage of artillery, many helicopter gunships were deployed to Metina, Zap and Avasin and fired rockets and thousands of bullets while the area continued to be pounded by Turkish jets and artillery. This caused huge fires in the area which is covered by dense forests and hosts a variety of different animals, some of which are under the threat of extinction. After that, under the protection of armed Turkish drones and helicopter gunships hundreds of Turkish soldiers were airdropped in the area. Some 2 kms deep in the area, and some 9 kms.

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