Protesters in Germany and Cyprus condemn Turkey’s airstrikes

Several hundred people took to the streets of Hamburg on Sunday to protest Turkish airstrikes in the northern regions of Syria and Iraq.

Ankara launched deadly strikes, the Turkish Defence Ministry said on Sunday, targeting Kurdish groups that Ankara holds responsible for last week’s bomb attack in Istanbul.

Warplanes attacked bases belonging to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party or PKK, and the Syrian People’s Protection Units, or YPG, the ministry said in a statement, which was accompanied by images of F-16 jets taking off and footage of a strike from an aerial drone.

The ministry cited Turkey’s right to self-defence under Article 51 of the United Nations Charter in launching an operation called Claw-Sword late on Saturday.

It said it targeted areas “used as a base by terrorists in their attacks on our country.”

Syrian Kurdish officials have alleged that civilians died from the air attacks.

The shelling came after a bomb rocked a bustling avenue in the heart of Istanbul on November 13, killing six people and wounding over 80 others.

Turkish authorities blamed the attack on the PKK and its Syrian affiliate, the YPG.

The Kurdish militant groups have, however, denied involvement.

Meanwhile, Kurds living in Cyprus held a demonstration in Limassol, calling for an immediate halt to Turkish airstrikes.

The protest began at 3 pm from the Kurdistan Cultural Centre, with protesters marching towards the Limassol district administration square.

Holding placards against Turkey, some called for ‘freedom in Kurdistan’.

“We call on every democratic citizen, party or organisation to condemn the new Turkish attack,” organisers of the protest said before it began.

“The silence of the international community kills Kurds and we must all realise this, especially here in Cyprus, where after all we have a common enemy, fascist Turkey,” the Cyprus-Kurdish Solidarity Association’s Fivos Faros said.

A representative of the Kurdish Party in Cyprus, Yassin Tarbus, called for assistance from the international community to stop Turkey.