Turkey: Treatment of Kurds

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 11:00 am on 10th April 2019.

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Photo of Lloyd Russell-Moyle Lloyd Russell-Moyle Labour/Co-operative, Brighton, Kemptown 11:00 am, 10th April 2019

I beg to move,

That this House
has considered the treatment of Kurds in Turkey.

Thank you, Mr Howarth, for allowing me to speak on this matter. As a vice-chair of the all-party parliamentary group for Kurds in Turkey, I wanted to secure this debate to highlight what I believe is a worsening situation for Kurds in Turkey.

On 31 March, my hon. Friends the Members for Enfield, Southgate (Bambos Charalambous), for Edmonton (Kate Osamor) and for Hornsey and Wood Green (Catherine West) and I were meant to travel to Turkey to meet Leyla Güven and observe the local elections taking place in Turkey. Unfortunately, the Government announced extra sitting days due to Brexit—something that I suspect even the Government could not help at that time—and we had to cancel the trip. However, my hon. Friend the Member for Enfield, Southgate and I did travel down to Newport to meet Imam Sis. Imam is a brave Kurdish activist from Newport who, 114 days ago, embarked on an indefinite hunger strike. Two weeks ago, when we met him, the hunger strike was taking its toll, but although his body was giving way, his determination in the cause of Kurdish freedom was not.