Thousands in Paris: We won't allow the case to be covered up

Thousands joined a rally in Paris today to mark the 4th anniversary of the murder of Kurdish women Sakine Cansız, Fidan Doğan and Leyla Şaylemez, and vowed to keep the struggle going until justice is done.

Thousands of Kurds living in Europe have gathered in Paris to remember PKK founding mumber Sakine Cansız, Kurdistan National Congress (KNK) Paris Representative Fidan Doğan and Kurdish Youth Movement member Leyla Şaylemez who were assassinated in Kurdistan Information Center in the heart of the French capital on January 9, 2013.

Masses started to gather at Gare du Nord as of early morning hours to join the rally organised by European Kurdish Women’s Movement (TJK-E). Demonstrators marching to the République Square for a rally carried photographs of Sakine, Fidan and Leyla as well as posters of Kurdish People's Leader Abdullah Öcalan and flags of PKK (Kurdistan Worker's Party), YPG/YPJ (People's/Women's Defense Units).

Demonstrators protested the French state for the postponement of the trial for gunman Ömer Güney who suddenly died in mid December 2016 before appearing in court almost 4 years after the mass execution.

"Your silence is due to your complicity" chanted protestors who included Cansız, Doğan and Şaylemez families, representatives of French NGOs, communist and socialist parties and executives of Kurdish institutions. European Parliament MPs, Paris Deputy Mayor Helene Bidard, KONGRA-GEL Co-chair Remzi Kartal and representatives of left-wing organizations from Turkey and Kurdistan were among those present in the rally which was held in the République Square after a 2-km march from Gare du Nord.


Making the opening speech in the rally, TJK-E Spokeswoman Dilşah Osman reminded of the massacres suffered by the Kurdish people throughout their history, stressing that it was women to suffer the most from these massacres, and later to adopt a stance against massacres and start a pursuit of freedom in line with the paradigm of Kurdish People's Leader Abdullah Öcalan.

Regarding the murder of three Kurdish women in Paris, Osman said they were of the opinion that many forces had a hand in the murder of Sakine, Fidan and Leyla as Ömer Güney was just the gunman that was chosen and held responsible. She underlined that this massacre was perpetrated with the open and clear approval of the French intelligence, recalling that the French authorities' promises to shed light on the killings, which they made on the day of the massacre, remain forgotten and unfulfilled.

"The trial of the gunman has been constantly postponed for 4 years because they did not want this trial to begin and they wanted to cover it up. However, as Kurdish people and women's movement, we will not give up on this case and will continue our struggle until the truth is brought to light."


Families of Sakine Cansız, Fidan Doğan and Leyla Şaylemez also spoke at the rally.

Sakine's brother Metin Cansız said they were hurt 4 years ago with the triple murder, and are hurt once again today as they have received the news of the suspect's death while awaiting justice from the French judiciary. “To us, the French state is responsible for this case on which we will never give up the struggle for justice”, he said.

Fidan's father Hasan Doğan described the killings as a political murder and called on French communists and socialists to take action in order for justice to be done.

Leyla's father Cumali Şaylemez pointed out that France was trying to cover the case up, but that they will never allow them to do so.


Speaking after, Paris Deputy Mayor Helene Bidard expressed solidarity with the Kurdish women and their struggle. Bidard emphasised that she would be standing with the Kurdish people until justice is done and the case is re-opened.


KONGRA-GEL Co-chair Remzi Kartal also vowed to keep their struggle going until the murderers are exposed and put on trial, recalling that the Kurdish people have been fighting for 4 years now in order for light to be shed on the massacre of the three Kurdish women.

Kartal said: "French authorities and judiciary have prolonged the period for the suspect's trial instead of exposing the truth on the killings. There are many documents and evidences proving that this massacre was perpetrated by the Turkish intelligence MİT. Despite this truth being so clear, the trial was postponed and left to time. The French judiciary shouldn't sacrifice this case to dirty relations. However, the French government unfortunately did not give an ear to the Kurdish people and women. We hereby say it clearly to the French government that we will continue our struggle until the truth on these killings is revealed."