Chain of genocides in Southern Kurdistan demands international help

Solin Hacador

By Solin Hacador:

The human tragedy in Southern Kurdistan is increasing and it demands more international help. Following Friday’s massacre of Yezidi Kurds in Kocho village of Shengal , there are reports of 300 more civilians killed yesterday by the Islamic State (ISIS) terrorists and many are still trapped on the mountain. This can be considered a Kurdish Genocide!

We are aware that the EU Foreign Affairs Council has given approval to supplying arms to defeat ISIS but this support is subject to some conditions. It will be done according to the capabilities and national laws of the member states and, in line with US policy, with the consent of the Iraqi national authorities. This means the promised weapons deliveries would have to be approved by the new Baghdad government of Haider al-Abadi.

It is clear that Britain is prepared to transport weapons to the Kurds on behalf of other EU countries. As a Kurd, I would like to express my special thanks to Britain and the EU countries that are supporting Kurds.

This very special action by them is sincerely appreciated but the restrictions on delivering arms directly to the Kurdish peshmergas are putting Kurdish civilians at greater risk.

I would like to remind everyone that it was the US’s delayed action and its arms embargo towards the Kurdish peshmergas which caused the recent human tragedy: if the US had armed Kurds sooner, the civilians around Sinjar and the Mosul dam wouldn’t be lost and many peshmergas wouldn’t have been martyred.

We are aware that US arms that were subject to Iraqi’s national approval were seized by ISIS and used against Kurdish civilians and peshmergas. Why is the same mistake being repeated by the EU?

ISIS is threatening not only Kurds and Iraqis but also the peace and security of the world. If its criminal activities are not controlled, it will move to Europe and all over the world. Therefore, the EU and US should also focus on its financial supporters, and mainly the harbouring countries.

A significant number of European citizens of Arab Muslim origin are joining ISIS and the “call of Jihad”. This requires urgent investigation. The EU countries should pay more attention to this very serious issue and deny these people freedom of movement. At the least they should be identified and their citizenship be revoked.

Article 15 of the Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism recognizes states’ duty to investigate the facts of an alleged terrorist crime and, where appropriate, to prosecute or extradite the alleged perpetrator. With the increasingly transnational character of terrorist networks, there has been a corresponding evolution of cross-border cooperation and mutual legal assistance in the investigation and prosecution of terrorist suspects. States are now obliged to cooperate with one another in transnational counter-terrorist investigations (including in the arrest and detention of suspects), in responding to requests for mutual legal assistance and in extraditing suspects and fugitives.

Several international media outlets have stated that the terrorists of ISIS are harboured and financially supported by Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Turkey and so these countries also need to be dealt with legally.

It is good news that Kurds are supported by the EU countries and the US but it is also bad news that Kurds are subjected to too many formal proceedings while the matter is intensively urgent!

The EU’s late reply to the Kurdistan Regional Government’s requests for arms can trigger more attacks on civilians. It can strengthen the morale of the ISIS Islamic extremists in Iraq.

The barbaric activities of ISIS are serious crimes against humanity, international peace and security which internationally need to be dealt with immediately.

Yes, my heart is burdened by this unbelievable tragedy. I am having difficulty in understanding the legal proceedings of the EU while civilians are being massacred in the area and under a long-term threat from the violent terrorists of ISIS.

We should remember the historical genocide of Kurds committed by the dictator Saddam Hussein who killed and injured hundreds of thousands of Kurdish people!

My concern is that more genocides will take place unless Kurdish peshmergas are provided with sufficient arms and military equipment in time.

The United Nations Charter, which provides the legal framework for the use of armed force, must be respected in the fight against terrorism.

The Southern Kurdish community – morally, physically, mentally and financially – is being victimized as a result of ISIS’s terrorist attacks. We, the Kurdish community, urge the international community to cooperate in preventing the terrorists from committing more crimes against humanity.

I also recommend that an international Kurdish Legal Council to be established to act for the Kurdish Regional Government and Kurdish civilians’ rights.

The US and the European states should remember the historical genocide committed by Saddam and the recent massacres of Yezidi Kurds and supply the Kurdistan Regional Government with the necessary support in time.

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