Kurdish Studies Scholars’ Statement of Solidarity and Call for Action to Support Kobani

7 10 2014

The humanitarian crisis caused by the Islamic State (IS) continues to terrorize and displace hundreds of thousands of people in the Middle East. The autonomous canton of Kobani is now bearing the brunt of the IS’s attacks as the international community has mostly been passive. The city has been under siege for three weeks. Despite fierce resistance by the defenders of the town, the advance of the IS forces towards Kobani is threatening to set off another massacre similar to that of Shengal. As scholars working on issues related to the Kurds and other peoples of Kurdistan, we are profoundly concerned about yet another imminent humanitarian crisis and stand in solidarity with the people of Kobani. We urgently call on the coalition forces against the IS and the broader international community to take immediate action to prevent an impending disaster by supporting the Kurds in their fight for self-defense.

We view the situation in Kobani as one of self-defense against the military aggression of the IS, notorious for its macabre forms of violence against ethnic and religious minorities. The defenders of the city of Kobani have repeatedly and desperately tried to bring their predicament to the attention of the world community and called for more focused and effective air strikes against IS targets around Kobani in coordination with the political authorities and resistance fighters of Rojava (Western Kurdistan). They are once again asking for diplomatic and political recognition, weapons of self-defense, and humanitarian aid to protect themselves against the relentless onslaught of IS. They are too ill-equipped to be able to fend off the most advanced American and Russian arsenals used by the IS. If global support is not provided immediately, they may not be able to withstand the IS’s incessant bombardments; tomorrow may be too late.

We fully support Kobani’s demands and spirit of self-defense and call on the international coalition forces and the broader international community to support Kobani immediately. In expressing our solidarity, we need to stress the fact this statement is not a call for any military aggression or occupation, including that of the Turkish military. We encourage the Turkish government to negotiate with the Kurdish representatives in good faith to ensure the ongoing peace process, which holds much promise. As Kurdish political representatives of Rojava have repeatedly declared, if they are recognized as a legitimate authority and provided with the needed weaponry and other support, they are capable of driving away the threat of the IS.

Ultimately our appeal for extending the necessary support to Kobani has as much to do with the survival of a pluralistic city and its residents, as it has to do with the defense of freedom everywhere else.

List of Signatories

  1. Gulan Abuzeyit, Brock University
  2. Yasemin Acar, Claremont Graduate University
  3. Dr. Necla Acik, University of Manchester
  4. Asst. Prof. Salih Can Aciksoz, University of Arizona
  5. Yılmaz Adal, Koc University
  6. Maria Chiara Addis, European Food Safety Authority
  7. Dr. Hashem Ahmadzadeh, Institute for Research and Development-Kurdistan/Iraq
  8. Assoc. Prof. Ananth Aiyer, University of Michigan-Flint
  9. Ahmet Hamdi Akkaya, Ghent University
  10. Asst. Prof. Elçin Aktoprak, Ankara University
  11. Prof. Nadje Al-Ali, University of London
  12. Taimoor Aliassi, Association for Human Rights in Kurdistan of Iran-Geneva
  13. Sacha Alsancakli, Université La Sorbonne nouvelle, Paris
  14. Assoc. Prof. Jennifer Alvey, University of Michigan-Flint
  15. Asst. Prof. Seda Altug, Bogazici University, ATA Institute
  16. Asst. Prof. Ali Ashouri, California State University, San Diego
  17. Delal Aydin, Binghamton University
  18. Dr. Yavuz Aykan, Université Paris I (Panthéon-Sorbonne)
  19. Azad Aziz, Manchester Academic Health Sciences Centre
  20. Sonay Ban, Temple University
  21. Hanifi Baris, University of Aberdeen
  22. Asst. Prof. Felek Baran, Hakkari University
  23. Dr. Derya Bayir, Queen Mary, University of London
  24. Carol Benedict, Winona State University
  25. Dr. Bahar Beser, Coventry University
  26. Dr. Daria Bocharnikova, Harvard University
  27. Dr. Joanna Bocheńska, Jagiellonian University
  28. Firat Bozcali, Stanford University
  29. N. Argun Cakir, University of Exeter
  30. Prof. Antonio Callari, Franklin and Marshall College
  31. Eray Cayli, University College London
  32. Omer Celebi, Yildiz Technical University
  33. Adnan Celik, Paris EHESS
  34. Filiz Celik, University of London, Birkbeck
  35. Onder Celik, Johns Hopkins University
  36. Dr. Behrooz Chamanaram, Georg-August-University, Goettingen
  37. Abdul Haque Chang, University of Texas at Austin
  38. Faculty Emeritus Jeff Clark, James Madison University
  39. Lynne Colley, Exeter and Soran Universities
  40. Assoc. Prof. Vahap Coşkun, Dicle University
  41. Prof. Hamid Dabashi, Columbia University
  42. Asst. Prof. Mahiye Secil Dagtas, University of Waterloo
  43. Cevat Dargin, New York University
  44. Engin Emre Deger, Istanbul Sehir University
  45. Dilara Demir, Rutgers University
  46. Yunus Demir, Istanbul Bilgi University
  47. Davide Denti, University of Trento, Italy
  48. Yasemin Dildar, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  49. Dr. Dilsah Deniz
  50. Dogan Dogan, Canadian Kurdish Federation
  51. Dr. Adis Duderija, University of Malaya
  52. Deniz Duruiz, Columbia University
  53. Esin Duzel, UC San Diego
  54. Dr. Vera Eccarius-Kelly, Siena College
  55. Asst. Prof. Ozge Ejder, Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University
  56. Deniz Ekici, independent Researcher
  57. Baban Eliassi, Geneva University
  58. Dr. Turgut Ercetin, Stanford University
  59. Ilgin Erdem, University of Massachusetts-Amherst
  60. Dr. Umut Erel, Open University
  61. Lara Fresko, Cornell University
  62. Resul Geyik, Mardin Artuklu University
  63. Dr. Maria Giedz, Gdansk School of Banking
  64. William Gourlay, Monash University
  65. Onur Gunay, Princeton University
  66. Asst. Prof. Azat Zana Gundoğan, University of Michigan-Flint
  67. Aziz Guzel, York University
  68. Serra Hakyemez, Johns Hopkins University
  69. Emad Hamedi, University of St Andrews
  70. Wendelmoet Hamelink, Leiden University
  71. Prof. Katharine Hodgkin, University of East London
  72. Susan Jahoda, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  73. Dr. Karolina Jaworska, University of Silesia
  74. Maruf Kabi, University of St Andrews
  75. Karol Kaczorowski, Jagiellonian University
  76. Erkan Karacay, University of Exeter
  77. Fethi Karakecili, York University
  78. Emine Rezzan Karaman, UC Los Angeles
  79. Seref Kavak, Keele University
  80. Dr. Serap A. Kayatekin, The American College of Thessaloniki
  81. Dr. Janroj Keles, Middlesex University
  82. Pinar Dinc Kenanoglu, London School of Economics
  83. K. Mehmet Kentel, University of Washington, Seattle
  84. Dr. Mehmet Rauf Kesici, Kocaeli Universtiy and Regent’s University
  85. Mina Khanlarzadeh, Columbia University
  86. Ugur Kocak, University of Chicago
  87. Prof. Anna Krasnowolska, Jagiellonian University
  88. Asst. Prof. Bulent Kucuk, Bogazici University
  89. Mehmet Barış Kuymulu, City University of New York
  90. Benjamin Kweskin, Independent Scholar
  91. Patrick Lewis, University of Chicago
  92. Andrew Littlejohn, Harvard Univesity
  93. Assoc. Prof. Yahya M. Madra, Bogazici University
  94. Assoc. Prof. Kamran Matin, Sussex University
  95. Ibrahim Malazada, Brunel University
  96. Caroline McKusick, University of California, Davis
  97. Fatma Derya Mentes, Duke University
  98. Dr. Sabah Mofidi
  99. Della Murad, Gulan
  100. Veronica D. Musa LL.M., Human Rights Lawyer, Argentina
  101. Prof. Leyla Neyzi, Sabanci University
  102. Assoc. Prof. Bruce Norton, San Antonio College
  103. Francis O’Connor, European University Institute, COSMOS
  104. Dilan Okcuoglu, Queen’s University
  105. Dr. Ahmet Feyyad Oncel
  106. Dr. Ergin Opengin, University of Bamberg
  107. Prof. Emeritus Baskin Oran, Ankara University
  108. Omer Ozcan, University of Texas at Austin
  109. H. Ege Ozen, Binghamton University (SUNY)
  110. Prof. Umut Ozkirimli, Lund University
  111. Asst. Prof. Ceren Ozselcuk, Bogazici University
  112. Asst. Prof. Hisyar Ozsoy, Univesity of Michigan-Flint
  113. Assoc. Prof. Ayse Parla, Sabanci University
  114. Zozan Pehlivan, Queen’s University
  115. Naomí Ramírez Díaz, Autónoma University of Madrid
  116. Asst. Prof. Renata Rusek-Kowalska, Jagiellonian University
  117. Sardar Saadi, University of Toronto
  118. Prof. George Saliba, Columbia University
  119. Berivan Kutlay Sarikaya, University of Toronto
  120. Cafer Sarikaya, Bogazici University
  121. Marlene Schäfers, University of Cambridge
  122. Dr. Thomas Schmidinger, University of Vienna, Austria
  123. Ceren Sengul, University of Edinburgh
  124. Dr. Serap Ruken Sengul, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
  125. Dr. Amir Sharifi, California State University, Long Beach
  126. Assoc. Prof. Said Shams, Soran University
  127. Assoc. Prof. Jaffer Sheyholislami, Carleton University
  128. Mushtaq Ul Haq Ahmad Sikander, Kashmir University
  129. Spyros A. Sofos, Lund University
  130. Asst. Prof. Kamal Soleimani, Mardin Artuklu University
  131. Rina Srabonian, University of Manchester
  132. Dr. Latif Tas, Oxford University
  133. Assoc. Prof. Kumru Toktamis, Pratt Institute Brooklyn, NY
  134. Asst. Prof. Hakan Topa, SUNY Purchase College
  135. Vedat Toprak, Anadolu University
  136. Zenonas Tziarras, University of Warwick
  137. Özden Melis Ulug, Bremen University
  138. Secil Uluisik, University of Arizona
  139. Laura Unger, Independent Researcher,
  140. Kerem Ussakli, Stanford University
  141. Asst. Prof. Nazan Ustundag, Bogazici University
  142. Prof. Abbas Vali, Bogazici University
  143. Dr. Anand Vaidya, Harvard University
  144. Prof. Nicole F. Watts, San Francisco State University
  145. Dr. Nerina Weiss, Fafo Institute for Applied International Studies, Norway
  146. Assoc. Prof. Kamala Visweswaran, University of Texas at Austin
  147. Assoc. Prof. Aziz Yagan, Dicle University
  148. Prof. Mesut Yegen, Istanbul Sehir University
  149. Ismail Yigit, Mississippi State University
  150. Dilan Yildirim, Harvard University
  151. Emrah Yildiz, Harvard University
  152. Yesim Yaprak Yildiz, University of Cambridge
  153. Asst. Prof. Zeynep Turkyilmaz, Dartmouth College
  154. Asst. Prof. Zehra Yilmaz, Van Yuzuncuyil University
  155. Cagri Yoltar, Duke University
  156. Dr. Deniz Yonucu, independent researcher
  157. Asst. Prof. Zafer Yörük, Izmir University of Economics
  158. Assoc. Prof. Grazyna Zajac, Jagiellonian University, Poland
  159. Dr. Goran A.S. Zangana, Health Policy Research Organization, Kurdistan/Iraq
  160. Dr. Asli Zengin, Yörük University
  161. Dr. Charlotta Zettervall, Malmö University
  162. Dr. Welat Zeydanlioglu, Kurdish Studies Journal Editor, Sweden
  163. Prof. Zvi Zohar, Bar-Ilan University
  164. Dr. Farangis Ghaderi, Exeter University
  165. Duygu Çelik, Istanbul University, Turkey
  166. Dr Jalal Nori, Stockholm University
  167. Servet Erdem, University of Oxford
  168. Fateh Saeidi, Georg-August University
  169. Gulcan Sezer, independent researcher, Holland
  170. Assoc. Prof. Yılmaz Özdil, Mardin Artuklu University
  171. Dr. Hiva Panahi, Panteion University
  172. Prof Zeynep Gambetti, Bogazici University
  173. Dr Recep Dogan, independent researcher, Turkey
  174. Seyfettin Cabuga, Fatih University
  175. Asst. Prof. Marina Taloyan, Karolinska Institute, Sweden
  176. Osman Isci, Hacetepe University, Turkey
  177. Dr. Firat Gundem, Dokuz Eylul University, Turkey
  178. Dr. David Selim Sayers, San Francisco State University
  179. Dr. Evrim Emir-Sayers, San Francisco State University
  180. Ihsan Gunduz, George Mason University
  181. Ass. Prof. Umut Tümay Arslan, Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University
  182. Dr. John Huynyk, independent researcher, London, UK.
  183. Dr. Salih Akin, University of Rouen
  184. Asst. Director, Christian Sinclair, University of Arizona
  185. Betul Rifaioglu, University Sussex
  186. Dr. Rûken Alp, Sabanci University
  187. Dr. Zerrin Ozlem Biner, University of Cambridge
  188. Navid Naderi, Duke University
  189. Dr. Cuma Cicek, SciencesPo de Paris/CERI
  190. Firat Capan, Hacetepe University
  191. Ceren Zeynep Ak, Queen Mary, University of London
  192. Jan Bojer Vindheim, Norway
  193. Asst. Prof. Ali Kemal Özcan, Tunceli University
  194. Prof. Michael Leezenberg, Amsterdam University
  195. Didem Oral, European University Institute
  196. Özgür Sevgi Göral, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS)
  197. Ahmet Alış, Bogazici University
  198. Z. Asli Elitsoy, Bilkent University
  199. Massoud Sharifi Dryaz, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS)
  200. Bekir Halhalli, Comenius University in Bratislava
  201. Asst. Prof. Selim Temo, Mardin Artuklu University
  202. Gulay Turkmen- Dervisoglu, Yale University
  203. Pinar Kemerli, Bard College, Cornell University
  204. Djene Bajalan, American University of Iraq – Sulaimani
  205. Dr. Nadia Jones-Gailani, University of South Florida
  206. Dr. Sebahattin Topcuoglu, independent, Hamburg, Germany
  207. Dr. Farhad Shakely, Uppsala University
  208. Asst. Prof. Barış Ünlü, Ankara University
  209. Kajal Mohammadi, York University, Canada
  210. Mehtap Tosun, Middle East Technical University
  211. Kumru Bilici, Carleton University, Canada
  212. Shayee Khanaka, librarian, University of California, Berkeley
  213. Dr. Ipek Demir, University of Leicester
  214. Mardin Aminpour, The university of Texas at Austin
  215. Assoc. Prof. Osman Aytar, Malardalen University, Sweden
  216. Kawa Morad, University of Exeter
  217. Ozcan Ogut, University of Pompeu Fabra
  218. Prof. Ali Akay, Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University
  219. Ülker Sözen, Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University
  220. Emine Iğdi, Free University of Amsterdam
  221. Assoc. Prof. Jaffer Sheyholislami, Carleton University, Canada
  222. Dr. Gérard Gautier, Institut National des Langues et Civilisations Orientales, Paris
  223. Dr. Eszter Spät, Käte Hamburger Kolleg, Ruhr-Universität Bochum
  224. Demet Arpacık, CUNY Graduate Center, New York
  225. Charlotte M. Sáenz, Adjunct Associate Faculty, California Institute of Integral Studies, USA
  226. Shenah Abdullah, University of Sulaimani-Kurdistan, Iraq
  227. Dr. Zhala Azad, University of Sulaimani-Kurdistan, Iraq
  228. Assoc. Prof. Besime Sen, Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University
  229. Asst. Prof. Ceren Belge, Concordia University
  230. Dr. Boris James. Institut Français du Proche-Orient
  231. Shna Kurdi, independent researcher, UK
  232. Prof Izettin Önder, Istanbul University
  233. Alev Yıldırım, CUNY Graduate Center, New York
  234. Tugba Yildirim, EHESS, France
  235. Berrin Altin Soran, University of Leicester
  236. Yeşim Mutlu, Middle East Technical University
  237. Daniel Barry, CUNY Graduate Center, New York
  238. Sibel Yardımcı, Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University
  239. Murat Cemal Yalçıntan, Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University
  240. Dr. Behrooz Shojai, Mardin Artuklu University
  241. Arda Gucler, Northwestern University
  242. Dr. Azad Henareh, United States Department of Agriculture
  243. Deniz Cifti, Exeter University
  244. Senem Guneser, Free University of Brussels
  245. Prof. Christine Allison, Exeter University
  246. Safak Kilictepe, Indiana University
  247. Ulaş Özdemir, Yıldız Technical University
  248. Dr. Kariane Westrheim, University of Bergen
  249. Muhammad Waladbagi, Durham University
  250. Assoc. Prof. Benjamin Smith, University of Florida
  251. Dr. Clemence Scalbert-Yucel, University of Exeter/Institut Français des Etudes Anatoliennes
  252. Assoc. Prof. Maya Arakon, Süleyman Sah University
  253. Gulden Ozcan, Carleton University, Canada
  254. Asst. Professor, Juan Obarrio, Johns Hopkins University
  255. Asst. Prof. Senem Aslan, Bates College
  256. Erden Ilter, Binghamton Universtity, USA
  257. Dr. Katharina Brizić, University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley Language Center
  258. Prof. Adriano V. Rossi, L’Orientale University, Napoli, Italy
  259. Kardo Bokani, Assistant Lecturer, University College Dublin
  260. Prof. Hamit Bozarslan, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS)
  261. Dr Ozlem Galip, University of Oxford
  262. Latif Yilmaz, Middle East Technical University, Turkey
  263. Hakan Sandal, Istanbul Bilgi University, Turkey
  264. Prof. Gulistan Gurbey, Free University of Berlin
  265. Dr. Kariane Westrheim, University of Bergen
  266. Dr. Minoo Alinia, University of Uppsala
  267. Sara Belelli, University of Naples, Italy
  268. Dr. Cengiz Gunes, The Open University, UK
  269. Birgul Yilmaz, SOAS, University of London
  270. Nazan Bedirhanoglu, Ankara University
  271. Dr. Murat Issi, University of Panteion, Greece
  272. Deniz Cenk Demir, McGill University, Canada
  273. Veronica Buffon, University of Exeter
  274. Dr. Anna Grabolle-Celiker, independent researcher, Turkey
  275. Can Cemgil, Istanbul Bilgi University, Turkey
  276. Shahab Vali, Artuklu University, Turkey
  277. Behnam Amini, York University, Canada
  278. Francesco Marilungo, Exeter University, UK
  279. Schluwa Sama, Philipps-University Marburg, Germany
  280. Prof. Veena Das, John Hopkins University, USA
  281. Assoc. Prof. Naveeda Khan, John Hopkins University, USA
  282. Assoc. Prof. Clara Han, John Hopkins University, USA
  283. Dr. Mustafa Akcinar, University of Zurich
  284. Yasamin Moein, Istanbul Bilgi University, Turkey
  285. Dr. Azer Kilic, Koc University
  286. Dr. Salima Tasdemir. independent researcher, Turkey
  287. Zeynep Kocak, European University Institute
  288. Katrine Scott, Lund University
  289. Senem Guneser, Free University of Brussels
  290. Izettin Onder, Bogazici University, Turkey
  291. Assoc. Prof. Seckin Aydin, Batman University, Turkey
  292. Elif Genc, New School for Social Research, USA
  293. Dr. Thomas Schmidinger, University of Vienna
  294. Ozgur Cicek, Binghamton University, USA
  295. Dr. Handan Caglayan, Ankara University, Turkey
  296. Gustavo Espeja, independent researcher, Argentina
  297. Mithat Ishakoglu, University of Exeter, UK
  298. Dr. Maria Six-Hohenbalken, Institute for Social Anthropology, Austria
  299. Dr Tove Skutnabb-Kangas, independent researcher, Sweden
  300. Özgür Bal, Middle East Technical University, Turkey
  301. Prof. Adriano V. Rossi, L’Orientale University, Italy
  302. Dr. Olivier GROJEAN, Aix-Marseille Université, France
  303. Beyan Farshi, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada
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