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30.06.2003 - 13:18

Navenda PENa Kurd doza serbestkirina ziman kurd li Sryay dike

BREMEN (amude.com) - Di daxuyaniyek de ji bo PENn chan, Komteya Wergerandin Parastina Zimn a Navenda PENa Kurd li Elmaniyay piştgiriya xwepşandana zarokn kurd li Şam daxwazn wan ji bo serbestkirina perwerdekirina bi ziman kurd li Sryay dike.

Komteya Wergerandin Parastina Zimn a Navenda PENa Kurd di daxuyaniya xwe de, ya ku bi zilam ingilz hatiye nivsandin ji malpera Amd re hate şandin, navendn PENn chan agahdar xwepşandana zarokn kurd, a ku di 25 v meh li Şam pk hat, dike, girtiyn xwepşandan bi nav dike. Herweha ew bi kurt li ser rewşa ziman wjeya kurd li Sryay radiweste radigihne, ku ew ji ber qedexkirin ewsandin rewşeke pir dijwar derbas dikin. Ji bil v yek, Navenda PENa Kurd behsa qedexekirina tomarkirina navn kurd ji bo zarokn nby dike.

Di dawiya daxuyaniya xwe de, Komteya Wergerandin Parastina Zimn a Navenda PENa Kurd bang PENn din li chan dike, ku piştgiriya daxwazn Navenda PENa Kurd bikin, ji rjma Sryay doza serbestkirina ziman kurd li Sryay bikin. Ew nabne, ku tomarkirina navn kurd ji bo zarokan herweha perwerdekirina zarokan di dibistanan de bi ziman kurd d bibin xeterek ji bo Sryay kultura ereb ya xwed hzeke mezin.

Em li v der daxuyaniy bi ziman ingilz diweşnin, wek ku ji me re hatiye:

On Peaceful Expression of Kurdish Linguistic Identity by Children in Syria

On May 25, 2003, a march by Kurdish children had been organised in Damascus coinciding with the Worlds Children Day. The action was peaceful and non-provocative and thus announced in the mass media a day before, that is, on 24 June, 2003. The march was planned to end at the UNICEF headquarters in Damascus where a statement would be handed over to officials addressing the hardships that the Kurdish children face in Western (Syrian) Kurdistan. The statement addressed a raft of issues for the UNICEF to consider, such as the difficulties that have been created by the Syrian authorities when registering Kurdish names, not having classes in their mother tongue and discrimination against Kurds in schools. While more than 200 Kurdish children accompanied by some parents, sisters and brothers carrying roses and chanting in Arabic and Kurdish for peace and equality were marching towards the UNICEF offices, at 10.45 more than 400 police officer besieged them and stopped their march some 100 meters from UNICEF headquarters. Due to the attack by the Syrian police the marchers were forced to disperse. Seven men were arrested by the police during the march. The detainees are university students, a lawyer and a musician. Their names have been disclosed:

Mr. Mohammed Mustafa
Mr. Khaled Ahmed 'Ali
Mr. Sherif Ramadhan
Mr. 'Amr Mourad
Mr. Salar Saleh
Mr. Hosam Muhammed Amin
Mr. Hussayn Ramadhan

The outrageous response of the Syrian authorities to the peaceful demonstration of the Kurdish children has been checked and referred to both Kurdish and international sources including:

1. The Left Party of the Kurds in Syria (Partiya Cep a Kurd li Surye);
2. The Unity Party of the Kurds in Syria (Partiya Yekiti a Kurd li Surye);
3. The Popular Solidarity Party of Syria (Partiya Hevgirtina Gel li Surye);
4. The United Democratic Party of the Kurds in Syria (Partiya Yekiti a Demokrat a Kurd li Surye);
5. KurdishMedia.com, London, UK, 24/25 June, 2003;
6. Radio Station Flora, Hanover, Germany, 25 June, 2003;
7. Reuters, reporting from Beyrut, 25 June, 2003.

Although the Kurdish PEN Center, as a matter of principle, does not interfere into political activities of the Kurdish organisations, we support peaceful attempts to legalise the Kurdish language and literature in countries controlling our homeland.

We should like to inform other PEN Centers, especially those working within the Translation and Linguistic Rights Committee, that since its independence, the Syrian Arab Republic has been trying to eliminate Kurdish identity in the country.

Thus, on 30 November 1960 the Syrian security forces burnt to death 380 Kurds, mostly children, in a cinema in the Kurdish town of Amuda while they were watching pictures about the Algerian revolution. No official investigation was carried out and it is believed that the Syrian authorities were the behind the crime.

In gerneral terms, torture and ill-treatment is routinely inflicted on Syrian Kurdish activists while they are held incommunicado in Syrian prisons and detention centres. The Syrian authorities impose heavy restrictions on the production and circulation of Kurdish literature, including books and music while denying the existence of Kurdish minority in the country. Out of nearly 2 millions of the Kurds living within the Syrian borders, 250,000 (one-third of them being children) are deprived of Syrian nationality. This is the result of the notorious Law No 93 passed on 23 August, 1962, which took away Syrian citizenship and all the accompanying it rights from many Kurds living on the border region between Syria, Iraq and Turkey. Indeed, officially these people do not exist any more.

We appeal to national PEN Centers to support our demand to the Syrian authorities to demonstrate a goodwill by easing restrictions on Kurdish language and literature and releasing the seven detainees from custody. The Translation and Linguistic Rights Committee of the Kurdish PEN Center does not share the fear of the Syrian Government that registering Kurdish names and allowing Kurdish classes in schools alongside Arabic ones pose a threat to the Syrian state and the powerful Arabic culture.

Dr. Zurab Aloian
Secretary, Kurdish PEN Center
Chair, Translation and Lingustic Rights Committee
Bremen, Germany, 27 June, 2003

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