Keyword: Kurds

The inside story of the 'ultra Left' activists arrested in France over alleged terrorism

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The Judicial Court in Paris which is used to try terrorist cases; February 2021. © Jérôme Leblois / Hans Lucas via AFP The Judicial Court in Paris which is used to try terrorist cases; February 2021. © Jérôme Leblois / Hans Lucas via AFP

For the first time in a dozen years France's antiterrorist authorities are investigating an alleged terrorist plot by an 'ultra Left' group. In December nine people were arrested at various locations around France. Seven of them were subsequently placed under formal investigation on suspicion of plotting “violent action” against the forces of law and order. Five of them have been held in custody since then. Mediapart's Camille Polloni has spoken to the families and friends of some of those arrested about what they have gone through. Inevitably this new case brings with it reminders of the long-running 'Tarnac affair' in which after a decade of investigations and legal proceedings a group of left-wing activists accused of terrorist acts against French railway lines eventually saw all those charges dismissed.

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An Islamic State propaganda photo of one of its sharpshooters. © DR An Islamic State propaganda photo of one of its sharpshooters. © DR

In the wake of the military defeats of the Islamic State group in the Middle East, a total of about 100 French nationals, including jihadist fighters, women and children, are now detained in Iraq and in Kurd-controlled territory in Syria. Their situation represents a dilemma for the French government, which is tempted to leave them in the hands of their captors and their justice systems, but which is under pressure from lawyers acting for their families who argue that to do so is unlawful and inhumane. Michel Deléan and Matthieu Suc report on the debate, and hear the arguments, which include security concerns, for and against their return.

Turkish president's Paris visit slammed as 'insult to Kurds'

Recep Tayyip Erdogan's trip comes the day before a commemoration of the murder of three Kurdish activists in Paris five years ago.

How judicial probe dodged real truth behind murder of Kurdish activists in Paris

By Jacques Massey
The three Kurdish activists killed in 2013: Leyla Saylemez, Sakine Cansiz, Fidan Dogan. The three Kurdish activists killed in 2013: Leyla Saylemez, Sakine Cansiz, Fidan Dogan.

In January 2013 three female Kurdish activists were gunned down in cold blood at their offices in Paris. The chief – and only - official suspect will stand trial in France early this year for their murder. However, despite an investigation by three examining magistrates the people who ordered the killings have never officially been identified. Instead, political, diplomatic and security concerns appear to have blunted the French judiciary's probe. Nonetheless, writes Jacques Massey, it is clear that the confrontational approach adopted by Turkish president president Recep Tayyip Erdogan towards the Kurds lies behind the shootings.

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France to send aid for Iraqi Kurds

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Three Kurdish women activists killed in Paris

One of the women found dead with gunshot wounds is said to be a co-founder of the militant Kurdish separatist movement, the PKK.