Wat vinden PKK’ers van de aanslag in Istanbul?

(This is a radio interview from late 2016, that was already on my website but not archived, and newsletter subscribers will get an alert that it’s ‘published’ now.)

Interview in Dutch current affairs radio show ‘Met het oog op morgen’, about TAK-attack in Istanbul on 10 December 2016. I was at a PKK base in Maxmur at the time.

De dubbele bomaanslag in Istanbul van gisteravond, waarbij 38 doden vielen, is inmiddels opgeëist door de militante Koerdische beweging TAK. Frederike Geerdink is in het Koerdische Noord-Irak en vertelt hoe er daar op de aanslag in buurland Turkije wordt gereageerd.

Beluister het interview op de site van het Oog!

Kurdish PKK celebrates 38th anniversary: ‘Our morales are like a bomb’

(This is a story from late 2016, that was already on my website but not archived, and newsletter subscribers will get an alert that it’s ‘published’ now.)

KIRKUK – On 27 November 1978 the Kurdistan Workers Party, known as the PKK, was founded. Your Byline correspondent witnessed how the organisation celebrated that at a base close to Kirkuk, Iraq.

Read the full story on Byline! The Dutch version was published in Dutch weekly Groene Amsterdammer and can be found on their website.

De PKK viert feest met IS op de loer

(This is a story from late 2016, that was already on my website but not archived, and newsletter subscribers will get an alert that it’s ‘published’ now.)

Kirkuk – PKK-commandant Cudi zong, op het volleybalveldje op een PKK-basis niet ver van de Iraaks-Koerdische stad Kirkuk, een lied en was plotseling de tekst kwijt.

Lees verder op de site van de Groene Amsterdammer! The English version is available here.

Laffe EU staat niet principieel achter Turkse persvrijheid

(This is a story from late 2016, that was already on my website but not archived, and newsletter subscribers will get an alert that it’s ‘published’ now.)

Koerdische media krijgen klappen, maar Europa houdt onder Turkse druk haar mond.

Lees het hele stuk op de site van de Volkskrant. The English version is available here.

EU’s cowardice shows lack of support for press freedom in Turkey

(This is a story from late 2016, that was already on my website but not archived, and newsletter subscribers will get an alert that it’s ‘published’ now.)

The European Commission spoke out for press freedom in Turkey. Which seems praiseworthy – until you take a closer look.

Read the full story here on Byline! The Dutch version was published at the site of Dutch daily De Volkskrant.

Survivors of the city wars

(This is a story from late 2016, that was already on my website but not archived, and newsletter subscribers will get an alert that it’s ‘published’ now.)

MAXMUR – The city wars in Turkey’s Kurdish regions are mostly over. Many fighters of the YPS, the Kurdish armed youth group that fought the Turkish army, lost their lives. Byline ran into some survivors in a dusty refugee camp in Iraq.

Read the full story on Byline!

If it’s liberated, Mosul won’t be safe for minorities unless it adopts grassroots democracy

MAKHMUR, Iraq ― Diversity is what defined the land that is now Nineveh Province and its capital city, Mosul, for thousands of years. Like other parts of the Middle East, it is historically multi-ethnic and multi-religious. While many of those who now fight hard to kick the so-called Islamic State out of Mosul pay lip service to the beauty of this cultural richness, their proposals for governance of the region after ISIS are merely scenarios for more ethnic and religious strife. A more logical solution, put into practice already in northern Syria, is hardly ever discussed.

Read the rest of the article on The Huffington Post.

Taalkamp bij de PKK – Eerst letters, dan wapens

This story was published in Dutch weekly news magazine Vrij Nederland, 14 September 2016.

Met het leren van een nieuwe taal ga je ook een nieuwe wereld binnen. Als dat ergens van toepassing is, dan is het wel in het PKK-taalonderwijskamp. Correspondent Fréderike Geerdink verbleef drie maanden in het kamp in een uithoek van Irak.

Kesif heye?’ Het is tien voor vijf ’s ochtends, ik heb mijn ogen nog maar net open en het korte Koerdische zinnetje dat in dit PKK-kamp zo vaak te horen is, rolt mijn mond al uit. Kesif heye?, oftewel: ‘Zijn er drones?’ Ik vraag het omdat heval Rûken (‘heval’, oftewel ‘vriend’, ‘kameraad’, is de vaste aanspreektitel onder PKK’ers), een van de twee guerrillastrijdsters met wie ik een tent deel, bij de tentopening zit en geconcentreerd luistert naar de geluiden in de lucht. Heval Navroj, net als ik nog onder haar deken, gebaart met haar hoofd van niet.
Continue reading here!

PKK co-leader Cemil Bayik: ‘What are we supposed to do? Surrender? Never’

This article was published on Byline, 6 September 2016.

Why did the PKK take the war against the Turkish state to the cities of Kurdistan, which are now one after another reduced to rubble by the state’s tanks and helicopters? PKK co-leader Cemil Bayik: ‘What is a rocket against a tank, a helicopter, a fighter jet?’ A report from the mountains.
Continue reading here!