Open letter to Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle

  • Society for Threatened Peoples
  • 07/01/2010 00:00:00

Open letter to Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle at present in Turkey through the German Embassy in Ankara and the German General Consulate in Istanbul

6 January 2010

Our country has a responsibility to victims of expulsion – in Turkey as well, Mr Westerwelle!

Dear Mr Westerwelle,

You are today in Turkey accompanied by many managers and you will be visiting the Gulf states .

On your visits to Istanbul and Ankara you will also be confronted with expulsion and crimes of expulsion. With all your thoughts on matters of commercial interest you should not forget these victims, two million citizens of Kurdish ethnicity.

During the unhappy Turkish-Kurdish war of 1984-1999 the Turkish army and allied militia destroyed 3,876 villages and hamlets in Turkish Kurdistan/East Anatolia. Some 3 million people were driven out: Kurdish children, women and men of Sunni, Yezidi and Alevitish faiths. Among the expelled there were also Christian Assyrian Aramaeans from Tur Abdin. The suffering caused by expulsion and the crimes of expulsion is something which we Germans can very well appreciate. Not everyone is in this position. But in our country millions of people expect that the new Foreign Minister lays priority not only on matters of commerce and strategic concern.

So we beg of you to speak up for a programme of reconstruction in East Anatolia , to promise German assistance and to work for the allocation of funds from the EU.

To this end we also beg of you to speak out clearly to the Turkish media and to those who are trying to block the most welcome new Kurdish policy of the Erdogan government, which is aiming at peace. Please do all you can to encourage measures to lift the ban on the pro-Kurdish party DTP. Its members of Parliament had made very great efforts to foster Turkish-Kurdish inter-ethnic social relationships which are peaceful and respect the equality of rights.

Yours Sincerely,

Tilman Zülch

Chair of the German section of the STP

Für Menschenrechte. Weltweit. Gesellschaft für bedrohte Völker / Society for Threatened Peoples, P.O. Box 20 24 - D-37010 Göttingen/Germany, Nahostreferat/ Middle East Desk, Dr. Kamal Sido - Tel: +49 (0) 551 49906-18 - Fax: +49 (0) 551 58028, E-Mail: nahost@gfbv.de - www.gfbv.de

  • Society for Threatened Peoples
  • 07/01/2010 00:00:00