our statements

june 02, 2021

Urgent Call for all International Ecological, Environmental and Human Rights Organizations

The Turkish attacks on South Kurdistan (North Iraq) are not only a human catastrophe, but also lead to a massive ecological disaster. Turkey`s aim is to occupy the Kurdish territory and weaken Kurdish resistance forces like the PKK. The general goals of this occupation campaign are assimilation, demographic change, ethnic cleansing, war crimes and the destruction of Kurdistan`s environment. As a continuation of this colonialist mentality the Turkish army has caused great harm to the forests and wildlife in South Kurdistan`s regions of Zap, Avasin and Metina since the start of its attacks on April 23, 2021. In order to stop this deliberate destruction of Kurdistan`s environment by Turkey, it is important for all international organizations and individuals who fight against climate change and for the protection of the environment to raise their voice.

South Kurdish Areas Under Attack: Metina, Avasin and Zap

Today, we are faced with a global ecological crisis. All over the world people are protesting on a daily basis to stop the relentless destruction of our world`s natural resources. Our water, earth, air and our forests are the basis of life. Polluting and destroying them destroys the natural balance all life is based on in this world. The reason for the burning of the Amazon forest in Brazil, fracking in the USA or the deforestation in Kurdistan is the same: the never-ending capitalist desire for profit.

Every day in Kurdistan new massive water dams are being constructed, forests are deliberately set on fire or cut down and waste from all over the world is being dumped. Thus, one of the richest and most beautiful geographies in the world is being destroyed. Kurdistan – a land rich with water, fresh air and fertile earth – is being devastated by Erdogan and his fascist Turkish regime.

The destruction of Kurdistan`s nature is part of a broader Turkish strategy: occupying Kurdistan and carrying out a genocide against the local Kurdish population. Just like in Afrin, Erdogan`s regime wants to ethnically cleanse South Kurdistan and settle Islamist mercenaries alongside their families in the region. Since April 23, it has used chemical weapons over a dozen times to reach its goals.

Kurdish Guerrilla Fighters Killed by Chemical Weapons Used by the Turkish Army

If this strategy succeeds, the Kurdish people will be subjected to a huge genocide and the struggle for democracy and freedom of the Kurdish Freedom Movement will be weakened. The Turkish occupation of South Kurdistan will have severe regional and international implications: from forcing millions of people to become refugees to a huge environmental catastrophe in an area regarded as the paradise of the Middle East. Preventing this is too urgent to only be left to the Iraqi government and the KDP since they refuse to acknowledge what is at stake.

The protection of nature knows no borders. Our environment is one. When forests are being destroyed and rivers are being polluted, all of us all over the world feel the destructive effects. Therefore, we need to stop the destruction of Kurdistan`s wildlife, forests and rivers together. We need to stop the fascist Turkish regime from occupying South Kurdistan. Because if they succeed at annexing this area so rich in natural resources, Erdogan and his regime will subject South Kurdistan to a relentless exploitation. They will leave no tree, no river and no village untouched.

Behdinan Region in South Kurdistan: Thousands of Trees Cut Down by Turkish Army
Behdinan Region in South Kurdistan: Thousands of Trees Cut Down by Turkish Army
Behdinan Region: Thousands of Trees are Illegaly being Taken to Turkey

Let us prevent this ecological catastrophe in South Kurdistan together! We call on all movements, organizations and individuals who are fighting for a livable future on our planet to raise their voice and take action against the Turkish occupation of South Kurdistan and the ecological destruction in the area! Let us join hands for protecting the water, earth, air and forests of our earth!

KCK Foreign Relations Committee