Open Letter to President Emmanuel Macron of France

By Arian Mufid:

The invasion of Afrin by the Turkish military state has caused many tragedies. You must have smelt the blood of Afrin’s people even though Afrin is a thousand miles away from Paris. You must have smelt the destruction; smelt the destruction of hundreds of buildings and apartments as the people were not prepared to surrender. You smelt the killings of hundreds of women and children in Afrin whom the invaders denied the opportunity to safely leave the city. You heard of the father and daughter fighting together in one trench; you heard about NATO’s second largest armed force: Turkey. It took them 58 days to enter the city due to the resistance of the YPG fighters who have proved themselves to be the most valiant army in the world. In 2015, after the Kurdish forces` victory in Kobane against ISIS brutality, Nasrin Abdullah, commander of the Kurdish Women`s Protection Units (YPJ) from Kobani and Asya Abdulla, the co-chair of the Kurdish Democratic Patriotic Union (PYD) were welcomed by the then French president François Hollande at the Elysee Palace in Paris. Hollande congratulated the Kurdish leaders for defending Kobani against the ISIS terrorists. Since then I have thought about whether France’s bond of friendship with the Kurdish movement is real. The position of France towards the Turkish occupation of Afrin reminded me of the great writer and doctor Frantz Fanon, who was born in a French colony and wrote brilliantly, in ‘The Wretched of the Earth’, about the impact of French colonialism in Algeria and how France had harmed the Algerian people; this motivated me to reread the book and conclude that France’s outlook is still colonialist. Its silence until last week on the Turkish occupation and atrocities in Afrin is to me akin to being silent about the ISIS terror campaign in Europe and especially in France. France’s silence and turning a blind eye to the people’s tragedy in Afrin is an encouragement to the ISIS forces in Europe and everywhere else in the world. France must be aware that Istanbul, Turkey’s biggest city, is the biggest gateway for ISIS into Europe. The Turkish military junta is blackmailing Europe.

Finally, I urge you, President Macron, to turn your recent words of criticism of the Turkish invasion into concrete actions. France must not allow itself to be blackmailed by Erdogan’s thuggish threats and should instead assist the suffering people of Afrin and support Kurdish and allied forces resisting Erdogan’s brutal campaign of occupation and ethnic cleansing.

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