Protests continue in Paris denouncing terrorist attack on Kurds in the city

Last week, an armed racist opened fire at a Kurdish cultural center in Paris, killing three people, including a women’s group leader and a Kurdish singer, and wounding several others

December 28, 2022 by Peoples Dispatch
Attack on Kurds in Paris
Protest demonstration in Paris. (Photo: Michel Stoupak/NurPhoto/Picture alliance via infomigrants)

Anti-racism groups and French working class sections have denounced the terrorist attack perpetrated against Kurds in Paris on December 23. On Monday, December 26, thousands marched in Paris in response to a call from the Kurdish Democratic Council in France (CDK-F) in solidarity with the victims of the terrorist attack at the Ahmet Kaya Kurdish Cultural Center in Paris, in which three Kurdish people were killed. The Communist Party of France (PCF) and the Young Communist Movement of France (MJCF) have denounced the attack and called for a  “firm and intransigent judgment of all actions of a racist nature.”

On December 23, an armed man opened fire at the Kurdish cultural center at 16 rue d’Enghien, in the 10th arrondissement of Paris. In the shooting, three people – leader of the Kurdish Women’s Movement Emine Kara (Êvîn Goyî), Kurdish singer in exile Mîr Perwer, and Abdulrahman Kizil – were killed and several other injured. The shooting has triggered widespread outrage .Protesting groups in the city were blocked by the security forces at some places. 

According to reports, a 69-year-old French man, who admitted to having a “pathological” hatred of foreigners and with a long criminal record, was indicted on Monday and placed under provisional detention for the terrorist attack.

The CDK-F has accused Turkish intelligence agencies of perpetrating the attack, saying that it was “orchestrated by Turkey” and took place “on the eve of the 10th anniversary of the triple assassination of Kurdish activists committed in this same 10th arrondissement of Paris by a Turkish intelligence agent.”

The Kurdish community in France has been subjected to racist and terrorist attacks on several instances in the past as well. The murder of  three women activists of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in January 2013 had created much furor both within and outside France. On the night of January 9, 2013, the bodies of the three women PKK activists were found on the premises of the Kurdistan Information Center in Paris. They had been shot in the head several times. Investigations by the French authorities pointed to the involvement of MIT (Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization) in the murders. The suspected murderer, Ömer Güney, was a 34-year-old Turkish man who worked as a maintenance employee at a French airport. Güney was tried and jailed, and died of brain tumor on December 13, 2016. It was alleged that he too had been killed at the behest of the MIT.

The French Communist Party (PCF), in a statement on December 24, extended “sincere condolences to the families and loved ones of the three deceased and [assured] them of its full solidarity in this ordeal.”

The PCF said that at the moment “the urgency is to protect the Kurds in Paris. And all light must be shed on this heinous crime. While the Kurdish Democratic Council in France (CDK-F) is clearly targeted in the context of multiple threats posed by Turkey, the investigation must determine whether this attack was sponsored.”

The party demanded that the results of the investigation into the 2013 murder be opened to the public so that justice could finally be done and the public can know whether or not the Turkish state was involved in those killings.

“We ask that the French State protect the Kurds of France who are under threat because of their commitment to human rights and those of the Kurdish people. Today, like yesterday, the PCF assures the Kurds of its support in their struggle,” added the party.

On December 24, the Young Communist Movement of France (MJCF) stated that “the French state cannot remain silent in the face of this situation and the crimes committed must give rise to convictions. An investigation must be carried out to determine whether or not there were links between the terrorist and the Turkish far-right movements and behind it, the Erdogan regime.”

“Also, this racist and far-right attack comes in a climate where a feeling of impunity is growing within far-right groups and parties,” added the MJCF.

Meanwhile, on December 25, the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) in Turkey demanded that “the perpetrators of the attacks be urgently revealed and that the public be enlightened in a transparent manner”  by the French authorities.