Kurds travel from across Europe to pay tribute to comrades murdered in Paris

AFP - JULIEN DE ROSA

Thousands of Kurds from across Europe travelled to the northern Parisian suburb Villiers-le-Bel on Tuesday afternoon for the funeral of three Kurds who were gunned down in central Paris just before Christmas.

Abdurrahman Kizil, singer and political refugee Mir Perwer and Emine Kara, a leader of the Movement of Kurdish Women in France, died in a shooting at the Ahmet Kaya cultural centre in the 10th district on 23 December. Three others were wounded.

William Malet, 69, a retired train driver, has been charged with the killings and attempted murder.

Mourners gathered amid tight security at a community hall in front of the coffins of the remains of the three dead.

The huge crowd followed the funeral on giant screens erected in the car park, showing the coffins surrounded by wreaths beneath a portrait of imprisoned PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan.

"This ceremony will be an opportunity for those who wish to do so to pay their last respects (...) before the bodies of the deceased are repatriated to their native lands for burial," the Kurdish Democratic Council of France (CDKF) said on its website.

March in Paris

A march will be held on Wednesday near the scene of the shooting.

Three days later, several thousand people are expected to set off from the Gare du Nord in Paris for a rally to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the death of three Kurdish activists linked to the Kurdistan Workers' party - PKK - who were shot dead in Paris.

Turkey has complained about the protests in France.


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