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Working Group on the Kurdish Question

Socialist International Middle East Committee Working Group on the Kurdish Question, Sweden

27 August 2002


The SIMEC Working Group on the Kurdish Question held a meeting in the context of a seminar organised by the Olof Palme Foundation on "National Minorities, Regional Self Government and Democracy in Iraq, Iran and Turkey", on 26-27 August 2002 in Sweden. At the meeting, representatives of the SAP (Sweden), SPÖ (Austria), SPD (Germany), PS (France) as well as the KDP (Iran), HADEP (Turkey), PUK (Iraq), KDP (Iraq) and Komala (Iran) were present, also invited was the CHP (Turkey).

The SIMEC Working Group took note of the further improved cooperation between the KDP and PUK in Iraqi Kurdistan, and supported the demands of the Kurdish people in Iraq to achieve a United Democratic Federal Iraq. Condemning repression, ethnic cleansing and all kinds of terrorism, such as Ansar al-Islam in Iraq, as well as in the whole Middle East region, the SIMEC Working Group further expressed its support for the Iraqi people in its wish for change.

On the basis of the relevant UN Resolutions, the community of states should work together to support the aspiration towards a democratic and federal Iraq, respecting human rights and the rule of law. At the same time the SIMEC Working Group stressed that building a future Iraq should be the responsibility of the different components of the Iraqi people and avoid any kind of regional interference.

The SIMEC Working Group urged European Governments and political parties especially to contribute responsibly to finding solutions to the Iraqi issues and the other burning conflicts in the Middle East.

The SIMEC Working Group took note with satisfaction of the recent reform legislation in Turkey and considered it an important step in strengthening relations between EU and Turkey. It encouraged Turkey to continue in this way, especially in implementing and applying this new legislation, guaranteeing fair elections in November, and in supplementing the reform legislation by a general amnesty for Kurdish and human rights activists to allow them to take part constructively in the political process. The SIMEC Working Group further welcomed the decision to recommend HADEP be admitted as a new member in the SI family.

The SIMEC Working Group took note of developments in Iran, and encouraged all forces in favour of democracy and human rights to continue the way of change and reform. In this context it underlined the necessity of finding a solution to the Iranian-Kurdish issue, which respects these values. The SIMEC Working Group appreciates the realistic standpoints taken by the KDP in Iran on this matter.

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