Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Stéphane Hassel: In Memoriam

The Russell Tribunal on Palestine mourns the passing of Stéphane Hessel

Brussels - 27 February 2013

For Immediate Release

Stéphane Hessel, author of the bestseller Time for outrage, French ambassador, human rights’ advocate and great philosopher, died last night at the age of 95.

The Russell Tribunal on palestine (RToP) mourns the passing of its honorary president and huge supporter. Pierre Galand, RToP general coordinator says :

The Tribunal has always ben his project, and he was its soul as he has always inspired us with his ideas and supported us with concrete gestures. He would have participated in the last session of the Tribunal, in Brussels on 16 and 17 March, but now that he’s passed away we will pay him the tribute he deserves. With his death, we loss a last eye-witness of the drafting of the Human Rights’ declaration. If the World loses a great personality and a distinguished intellectual and activist, at a personal level, I will miss him as a comrade and a friend.

In all sessions of the RToP held in Barcelona, London, Cape Town and New York, Hessel has denounced the outragious complicity of third parties in the continuous violation of the Palestinian people’s rights and the failure by Israel to comply with the international law. He’s also called on individuals and organisations around the World to put pressure on the international community so that politicians and decision-makers adopt all possible measures to reach peace in the Middle East and enforce the existing sanctions on those countries which don’t comply with UN resolutions.

On 18 February 2013, Stéphane Hessel gave a last interview on his involvement in the RToP. The interview will be published in a book by the French publisher Editions de L’Herne, due out in mid March. You can read the interview at this link (French only):

Notes to editors :
For further information on the Russell Tribunal on Palestine go to

One of the last public speeches made by Stéphane Hessel’s at the New York session of the RToP can be found at :

Contact person
Maurizio Molinari
RToP press officer

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Mass arrests of trade unionists in Turkey


Statement 22 February 2012

It is with dismay and outrage that once again we learn of yet another round of mass arrests in Turkey. This time the victims of this repressive police action, which has become all too commonplace in the country in recent months, are trade union activists and union officials.

Read in full

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Monday, February 18, 2013

The Kurdish Question in Turkey

The Spokesman 119

Edited by Tony Simpson

Ayse Berktay has been locked up in a Turkish prison since October 2011. She and some 200 others are, periodically, before Turkey’s Tribunal with Special Powers as part of the ‘KCK trials’. KCK stands for Kurdish Communities Union, which the Turkish government has labelled a ‘terrorist’ organisation, although the actual basis for this draconian claim is not at all clear.

In December 2012, many Kurds, some Turks and various others gathered at the European Parliament in Brussels to consider ‘The Kurdish Question in Turkey’. The conference was sponsored by the United European Left/Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL) political group, with support from Greens and Socialists. It had the sub-title, ‘time to renew the dialogue and resume direct negotiations’. Notwithstanding attempts by the Turkish authorities to restrict Kurdish participation, the conference heard from many speakers of diverse backgrounds and nationalities. They included two prominent Kurds, Leyla Zana, now a member of the Turkish Parliament, who was previously imprisoned there, and Zübeyir Aydar of the KNK, who participated in the aborted negotiations with the Turkish intelligence services (the so-called ‘Oslo Process’) that ceased in 2011. We publish their papers here, alongside Ayse’s own statement from prison on receiving an award from Turkish PEN, part of an international organisation which supports persecuted authors. Our Dossier section includes eyewitness accounts from some of the KCK trials.


The arduous business of peace – Leyla Zana MP

Time to talk – Zübeyir Aydar

Questioning 'terror' – Ayse Berktay


We the peoples – Roger Waters

Nottingham departed – Tony Simpson

In praise of troublemakers – Colin Firth

The problem of China, revisited – Ben Thompson

How I became a Socialist – William Morris

This morning's surprise – Mike Marqusee

Middle East nuke free – Yayoi Tsuchida

Dossier: Kurds on Trial – Tony Fisher, Barry White

Reviews – Michael Barratt Brown, Paul Brennan, Cathy Davis, John Daniels, Glyn Ford, Barry Baldwin, Abi Rhodes and Nigel Potter

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Monday, February 11, 2013

Russell Tribunal New York-The Film

Thanks to Deep Dish TV, we now have a great HD quality 2 hours film about the New York session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine available online.

Watch it, share it, use it!

All the best
Frank Barat

Russell Tribunal on Palestine. Follow us on Facebook.

Corporate Complicity in Israel's Occupation book about the London session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine is out now.

Gaza in Crisis: Reflections on Israel's War Against the Palestinians my book with Noam Chomsky and Ilan Pappe, is out now.

Read my blog here.

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