March 13, 2013

France: PKK Co-Founder Murdered

January 17, 2013

A man carries the body of one the three Kurdish women shot dead at the Kurdish Institute on January 10, 2013, in Paris. Thomas Samson/AFP via Timothy W. Coleman

Sakine Cansiz, one of the co-founders of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), and two others were gunned downed and killed at the Kurdistan Information Center in Paris, France.  At present, there is no information available on the assailant or assailants. Initial reports indicate that the murders were not likely a random act of violence.

The PKK, a militant nationalist group, has sought to form an independent state from within Turkey. The group has long waged a violent campaign to secure a homeland and is considered to be a terrorist organization by the European Union, the US, and Turkey.  The apparent assassination does not appear to have Turkey’s fingerprints on it since they recently began peace talks with the PKK. It is possible that the killings were an effort to derail the peace talks and may be part of an internal feud within the PKKs leadership.

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