A ban on political and even social gatherings, a bar on Kurdish language and culture; uprooting people, forced disappearances and a ‘caste’ of hundreds of thousands of local Kurds deprived of citizenship... life for Kurds in pre-war Syria was probably as dire as it is today for their kin in Iran.
Kseniya Sobchak, a well-known Russian political activist and social butterfly, is an outspoken critic of Russian leader Vladimir Putin. But, curiously, she seems to be taking a much softer line on Azerbaijan’s authoritarian-minded ruler, Ilham Aliyev.
Now approaching its third week, the "Occupy Taksim" movement, a peaceful sit-in to save Istanbul's Gezi Park from redevelopment, has taken on a festival-like atmosphere, with protesters organising to stand guard around the clock, provide uninterrupted food and water supplies, and carry out a self-initiated cleaning of the grounds.
As protests in Turkey stretch into their second week, the precise terms and conditions that could bring the social unrest to an end are unclear, though many speculate about what would end the deadlock between the government and protesters.
Sitting with hundreds of other protesters in the centre of Istanbul's Gezi Park Thursday night, Arzu Marsh rummages through her backpack to show off what she calls her makeshift "emergency kit": medical masks, a red spray-bottle filled with a liquid
that lessens the effect of tear gas, a scarf and some food.
Few imagined that the symbolic act of standing in front of bulldozers in Istanbul's Gezi Park in an effort to block a development project near the city's central square would have caused the reaction it did.
"Peace at home, peace in the world" is the official motto of the Turkish Republic. Coined in 1931 by the republic's founder, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, it implies a causal relationship, but the events this week in Istanbul and dozens of other cities of Turkey suggest that causality can work in reverse order, too.
Thousands of public sector workers in Turkey are on a two-day strike in support of anti-government demonstrations.
The peaceful withdrawal from Turkey of combatants from the Kurdistan's Workers Party (PKK) began last Wednesday but is already at risk of being compromised following a twin car bomb explosion on Saturday afternoon. The terrorist attack in Rayhanli in the Syrian border province of Hatay caused 46 civilian deaths and at least 155 injuries.
Zeki Gorbuz, a Turkish asylum seeker in Greece, who was arrested on Feb. 12, remains detained today due to an international warrant that was transmitted by Turkish authorities to Greece just one day before his asylum interview. Turkish media were quick to report the arrest, describing Gorbuz as a radical leftist and regional leader of the Marxist Leninist Communist Party (MLCP), which has been designated as a terrorist organisation by the Turkish government.
The Mar. 21 ceasefire in the battle between the Kurdistan Workers’ Party and the Turkish state offers Turkey not only the hope of peace after decades of bloodshed, but poses profound implications for the region at large.
It was only seven in the morning when Mohamed Abdi spread out a rug a few metres away from an artillery crater, up in the Qandil mountains of northern Iraq. This Iraqi Kurd from Suleimaniyah, 260 kilometres northeast of Baghdad, was ready to celebrate the Newroz – the Kurdish and Persian New Year – along with his family.
Abdullah Ocalan, the jailed Kurdish rebel leader, has issued a long-awaited ceasefire declaration that would be a major step towards ending a 30-year conflict that has cost around 40,000 lives in Turkey.
Kurdish rebels in Turkey have released eight hostages after their jailed leader Abdullah Ocalan called for a prisoner exchange.
While U.S. politicians Friday debated whether Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, a son-in-law of Osama bin Laden and former Al-Qaeda spokesman, should be tried in New York City, foreign policy analysts were speculating about the circumstances under which he was apprehended by U.S. authorities.