- Turkish authorities allowed the family of imprisoned Kurdish leader Abdullah Ojalan to visit him in Imrali prison. On Sept. 11, Ojalan’s brother Mehmet visited him. After visiting him the following day, Mehmet held a press conference where he explained that Ojalan was in good health despite his continued isolation. Mehmet quoted Abdullah Ojalan saying that “tomorrow is Eid, the Feast of Sacrifice, but when 30-40 people die every day in a country, there can be no feast. This isn’t ethical. The solution is in our hands, we can solve it.” The imprisoned leader also called on the Turkish government to visit him and discuss the peace process. He said “the issue will be resolved in six months if the state wants. Our projects are ready. This is a blind war, it’s not a war where one side can win. It has continued for 40 years, and maybe it will continue for 80 years more. The blood and tears must stop. This solution can’t be achieved unilaterally. The state is the largest party, if they point towards a solution, the issue will be resolved.” After the press conference, hundreds of Kurds across Turkey and Europe ended their hunger strikes, which they originally undertook in order to demand answers from the Turkish government about Ojalan’s health conditions.
- The Turkish government accused 28 elected mayors (24 of them Kurdish) of “links to terrorism” and removed them from office in various Kurdish towns. Later on, the authorities replaced the removed mayors with designated pro-ruling party AKP (Party of Justice and Development) “trustees.” Following their removal, the sacked mayors were not allowed to enter their office buildings. In a statement in response to the removals, the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) denounced the government’s move, saying “we will not concede to the Trustee Coup on Municipalities.” The Turkish government also removed 11,000 teachers in the Kurdish areas of the country for “support for the PKK.” More than 4,000 of the teachers are from the Kurdish Diyarbakir (Amed) province.
- The People’s Defense Units (YPG) released a statement agreeing to the recent Syrian civil war ceasefire organized by the United States and Russia and applying to most of the parties within the conflict. The YPG’s statement said “we confirm to operate in the context of that agreement,” adding that the agreement was “a positive step.”
- The Rojava and Northern Syria Autonomous Administration reached an agreement with Syria’s Tomorrow Movement for a political solution to the deepening problems in Syria. In a joint statement announced in Egypt, the two sides stated that the revolutionary uprising that had begun in Syria 5 years ago transformed into a civil war with the participation of regional and international powers. Both sides reiterated their past calls for a “democratic and national project to ensure [the] Syrian peoples’ right to self-determination.” The two parties signed the agreement in Cairo, Egypt.
- Groups affiliated with the Syrian National Coalition (SNC) reinitiated its bombing campaign of the Shekh Maqsoud neighborhood in Aleppo. The SNC began its initial bombings of the neighborhood on Sept. 7. This renewed shelling resulted in the death of the only doctor in the area and the injury of six civilians and one child. The shelling involved mortars originating from nearby areas controlled by SNC and Al Nusra Front.
- The Commission of Foreign Relations in Afrin Canton released a statement appealing to the Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon for “an immediate intervention to stop Turkey’s attacks against our people in Rojava and in Afrin in particular.” The statement comes after Turkey began shelling the Kurdish defense units in northern Afrin Canton, resulting in the death of six defense unit fighters. In the statement, the commission called to “maintain good relations with our neighbors” and stated that they “want all of our citizens to be able to live in peace.”
- In a continuation of a previous agreement, Iraq’s parliamentarians representing the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) and Gorran (Change movement) united under one bloc in Baghdad on Sept. 10. Deputy Alaa Talabani will head the new bloc, representing both parties. The bloc will hold a total of 30 seats, with the PUK holding 21 deputy seats and Gorran holding 9 deputy seats.
- Two Peshmerga forces were killed and four others wounded in Khazir district west of Erbil as a result of ISIS shelling. These recent shellings by ISIS began in response to the advances Peshmerga forces have made towards Mosul.
- On the first day of the Eid Al Adha, teachers in Sulaymaniyah, Kifry, and Ranya protested the delays of their salaries from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). The protestors called on the KRG to immediately pay their delayed salaries and to improve their economic situation. Salaries for public services employees have been delayed along with salaries for Peshmerga forces.
- Party of Freedom commander Hussein Yazdanpana told the Associated Press that his forces are trained by the U.S.-led coalition within the framework of fighting ISIS. Yazdanpana stressed that his forces will also continue fighting Iran’s regime as well.
- On Sept. 7, the Democratic Party of Kurdistan of Iran (KDP-I) announced the death of two of its Peshmerga fighters during clashes with Iranian revolutionary guards in Sardasht province. Since the KDP-I declared a resumption of its armed struggle against the Iranian regime this July, Iranian artillery has continued bombing suspected KDP-I strongholds around border areas between Iran and Iraqi Kurdistan. Clashes since July have resulted in casualties on both sides.