august 02, 2023
We Will Hold Those Responsible for the Genocide to Account
Nine years ago, the IS [Islamic State] committed a genocide against the Ezidi people in Şengal [Sinjar]. The Ezidis themselves define this as the 74th genocide committed against them. Regrettably, thousands of Ezidis lost their lives or were taken captive thus suffering unimaginably. We would like to once again honor the memory of those who lost their lives during the genocide and express that we share the pain of the Ezidi people. With great disgust we condemn the fascist IS gangs, these enemies of humanity, as well as their collaborators who committed the genocide. We would also like to renew our promise that as the Kurdish Freedom Movement we will stand by the people of Şengal in general and by the Ezidi people until the end. We will hold all those responsible for the suffering and the genocide to account.
The Ezidi people have been subjected to attacks and massacres by sovereign powers many times throughout history because of their faith. Therefore, it is very difficult to explain the history and life of the Ezidi people, which has been marked by genocides and massacres. Apart from looking for reasons, just thinking about this reality is difficult enough. What has been done to the Ezidis can only be described as a dark mentality and as savagery. The mentality of the fascist IS gangs, who inflicted the 74th genocide on the Ezidi people, reveals this clearly.
Humanity as a whole has a historical responsibility towards a people that has experienced so many massacres and genocides throughout history. Humanity’s responsibility is to create conditions in which the Ezidi people will not be subjected to genocide again, will be able to keep their faith and culture alive and will ensure their democratic self-administration and self-defense. Only this can be the right attitude against the genocides of the past. Today’s global standard of values, righteousness, morality, conscience and fairness is defined by the approach towards the people of Şengal and the Ezidis. Without recognizing this reality and acting accordingly, one cannot speak of humanitarian and conscientious values, of justice and democracy.
It is well-known how the Iraqi state forces and the KDP acted in the face of the IS attack. They did not resist but left the people of Şengal unprotected thus exposing them to a genocide. If the guerrilla forces had not been there and if the YPG/YPJ forces had not rushed to the aid of the people of Şengal, there would have been a much bigger genocide. It were the fighters of the guerrilla and from Rojava, all deeply attached to Rêber Apo [Abdullah Öcalan], who prevented an even bigger genocide. However, those who did not take a stance against the genocide today try to impose their own rule on Şengal and want to eliminate the democratic self-administration and self-defense forces of the Ezidi people. This constitutes a great insult to the Ezidi people. The so-called ‘Treaty of October 9th’, which was signed by the Kadhimi government on behalf of the Iraqi state and the KDP with support by the United Nations (UN), is a document representing this insult and shame. This treaty, which envisions the KDP’s rule over Şengal, is completely anti-democratic. Imposing it means continuing the genocide against the Ezidis. It is very regretful that the people of Şengal and their democratic institutions were not consulted, while those who exposed the people of Şengal to the genocide made a treaty among themselves and imposed it on Şengal. Imposing this on the people of Şengal and not taking a stance against this constitutes a greater crime than the genocide itself. Everybody needs to take the right attitude on this issue and the impositions on the people of Şengal have to be stopped. Only a treaty that takes into account the will of the people of Şengal and envisions the existence of a democratic self-administration and self-defense forces of the people of Şengal can be legitimate.
The demands of the people of Şengal for a democratic self-administration and self-defense forces are legitimate. There is nothing more legitimate and natural than a people who has been subjected to genocide to demand to live its belief and culture and to have these institutions. This not only in accordance with Iraqi and international law, but also constitutes a necessity. Rejecting these demands is illegitimate. The Iraqi state needs to therefore abandon its current attitude regarding the impositions of the KDP and the Turkish state. It needs to reject these impositions and adopt an approach that respects the will of the people of Şengal and solves the problems through dialogue and reconciliation. The interests of the Iraqi state lie not in the politics of the KDP and the Turkish state, but in solving the problems with the people of Şengal through dialogue. States and international institutions, especially the UN, should not support the impositions that do not respect the will of the people of Şengal. The KDP wants Şengal to be under its rule and the Ezidis to serve it. The Turkish state, on the other hand, has an anti-Kurdish mentality. It wants to carry out a Kurdish genocide. It is expansionist and colonialist. By increasing its influence over South Kurdistan/Northern Iraq and Şengal, it wants to establish hegemony over all of Iraq.
States and international organizations also have clear responsibilities towards the people of Şengal. The Ezidi people are a community with a deep-rooted faith. This people has been massacred and has faced several genocides throughout history. It should be supported and allowed to have a democratic self-administration and self-defense forces and to live its faith and culture. Parliaments and governments of many countries have passed resolutions recognizing the Ezidi genocide. These have been positive and valuable decisions. However, the right of the people of Şengal to have a democratic self-administration, self-defense forces and to live their faith and culture should also be supported and decisions should be taken in this regard. Peoples that have survived genocide have this very legitimate right. Therefore, everybody who considers themselves human and values their own morals and conscience needs to support this. The people of Şengal want to live in a unified Iraq on the basis of the recognition of their democratic will. Only by recognizing this legitimate right will it be possible to support the people of Şengal and to stand against the genocide.
KCK Executive Council