July 30, 2018

Statement in defense of imprisoned Kurdish activist Gulizar Taşdemir

Radical Women in the U.S. and Australia have signed an international statement demanding release of a Kurdish woman political activist who was extradited by Norway to Turkey, where she is likely to be tortured for her participation in the Kurdish struggle. Please contact Radical Women U.S. if you would like to add your organization’s name to the statement below:

The Kurdish woman activist Gulizar Taşdemir was extradited from Norway to Turkey on Wednesday, July 4, 2018.

Since her arrival back in Turkey neither her family nor her lawyers have information about her state of health, nor where she is staying, which deepens the concern about Taşdemir’s well-being.

Gulizar Taşdemir is a feminist, human rights activist and defender of the legitimate rights of self-determination of the Kurdish people. She has lived as a refugee in Norway since 2015, awaiting political asylum under the 1954 Geneva Conference Accords.

Gulizar's delicate state of health and her needs for ongoing medical attention have been ignored during the time that she has petitioned the Norwegian government for asylum. Instead, protection has been denied due to her political affiliation with the Kurdish struggle. Norwegian authorities bound both her hands and feet as it granted the extradition petition, putting her on a flight to Turkey where she faces persecution due to her active participation in the Kurdish struggle and where the obvious risks of torture and ill-treatment will seriously endanger her life.

After signing a bilateral agreement with Turkey in full violation of human rights, Norway is once again delivering Kurdish activists to their torturers.

It is time for Norway and the rest of the member countries of the European Union to respect the conventions and treaties that they themselves have drafted and signed regarding human rights.

We, as the Committee of Women in Solidarity with Kurdistan - Argentina and various other solidarity committees throughout Latin America, support the demands of the Kurdish Women's Movement and the Kurdish people. We hold the government of Norway and all the signatory countries of the Geneva Convention and the Refugee Statute contained therein responsible for all the consequences that ensue from the return of Gulizar Taşdemir to face a judiciary known for doing the bidding of a government that has suspended all adherence to the European Convention on Human Right and has taken measures to protect its practices of torture of detainees.

We ask all the institutions, the Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) of the Council of Europe, the European Court of Human Rights and the European Parliament to review this extradition and to provide this Kurdish woman activist with the treatment and consideration due to a political prisoner and respecting basic rights.

Finally, we call on all women, feminists and human rights activists of our continent to denounce this flagrant violation of the rights of this activist who has given her life to the struggle of her people to exist.

Comité de Mujeres en Solidaridad con Kurdistán - Argentina
Comité en Solidaridad con Kurdistán - Córdoba
Comite de Solidaridad con Kurdistan - La Plata
Comité de Solidaridad con Kurdistán Región chilena y Wallmapu
Colectivo de Solidaridad con Kurdistán - Paraguay (Las hijas del sol)
Vilma Almendra y Manuel Rozental, Pueblos en Camino
SOL (Socialismo y Libertad) – Chile
Radical Women, U.S. and Australia
Fernando Bargas: Multisectorial Antiextractivista, DNI
Gabriela Vargas, Asociaciópn Ex Detenidos Desaparecidos
Silvia Salgado- CORREPI, Venceremos, Partido de Trabajadores
Pablo Vasco, Centro de Abogados de Derechos Humanos
Vilma Ripoll, legislatura de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires, MC. MST
Alejandro Bodart, Legislatura Ciudad de Buenos Aires, MC. MST
Alicia Ordonez, Grupo Resistencias, DNI
Ranieri Miguel, Liber Pueblo, DNI
Nicolas Grimaldi, Razón y Revolución, DNI
Rolando Garcia, HIJOS, Zona Oeste, DNI
Luis Romero, Servicio Paz y Justicia
Dialogo 2000, Beberly Queen DNI
Ricardo Segretti, Autodeterminación y Libertad, DNI
Maria Alvarez, Convergencia Socialista La Verdad