9th January: The International Day of Action Against the Murder of Political Women

Dear women around the world,

Women’s liberation struggle around the world owes its gains and values to those women who led the way by devoting their lives to this fight.

At this historical turning point in the Middle East, sexist and militarist states of the world continue their barbarous massacres. Turkish state’s latest invasion of Rojava in North Eastern Syria in collaboration with the likes of ISIS is the latest demonstration of the gendered nature of such wars. The confederal system cultivated by Rojava women’s revolution, the prized gain of women’s liberation struggle and a model for the world, is under fierce attack from fascist and militarist powers.

9th January 2020 marks the 7th anniversary of the Paris massacre that claimed the lives of three resolute women committed to women’s liberation: Sakine Cansız, Fidan Doğan, and Leyla Şaylemez. Following this horrendous incident, Middle East Women’s Conference Amed (Diyarbakir) and World March of Women European Chapter declared the 9th of January as “The International Day of Action Against the Murder of Political Women,” dedicating it to all women who have lost their lives to political struggle.

On 4th January 2016, as if repeating the horror of 9th January, Free Women’s Congress (KJA) executives Sêvê Demir, Pakize Nayır and Fatma Uyar were executed by means of heavy weapons in the middle of the street in Silopi. Neither of these massacres received the attention they deserved and those responsible, the Turkish security forces, have not been made to account.

The murder of Syrian Future Party General Secretary Hevrin Xelef during the 2019 Rojava attacks by the Turkish State and allying imperialist NATO forces, and the savage photos of this massacre released to the world over their own media, is a testament to the hostile and atrocious politics targeting the historical gains of women.

The femicide in Paris as well as each subsequent killing are examples of political murder, the evidence of which is deliberately erased. Complicity and responsibility of the international powers in these incidents is evident. We know the Turkish state and her allies who execute these massacres with a fascist, militarist, and sexist mindset. We will follow these planned attacks until their perpetrators are brought to justice. On 9th January 2020, we will escalate our joint actions to hold those responsible to account. As women around the world, our solidarity against and resistance to the barbarous extremist ISIS and the states exhibiting male mob mentality will only grow in time.

Between 5th–9th January, we call to action women across Kurdistan, Turkey and the world to protest the massacres of Paris, Silopi and Rojava. Let us be in the streets and squares to protest femicide and these conspiratorial, militarist attacks on women.

Jin, Jiyan, Azadi!

Woman, Life, Freedom

The initial photo is from a protest in Paris in 2013