Comments and Amendments for Draft Resolution on Turkey’s 2010 Progress Report


Dear Sir/Madam,

The Syriac Universal Alliance (“SUA”) refers to the Draft Motion for a Resolution on Turkey’s 2010 Progress Report written by Mrs. Ria Oomen-Ruijten and dated 25 November 2010 (“Draft Motion”). We understand that the deadline for tabling amendments to the Draft Motion is 18 January 2011, and wish to provide our critical comments and proposed amendments to the Draft Motion.

The SUA is a Non‐Governmental Organization (NGO) in special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations since 1999. It is the leading voice of the Aramean (Syriac) people who are indigenous to Southeast Turkey (see “Attachment 1”), and thus rightfully seeks the security of their fundamental human rights, undifferentiated from those afforded to other minorities.

The SUA has thoroughly reviewed the Draft Motion as well as the Turkey 2010 Progress Report and commends the efforts made in dealing with minority rights in Turkey. However, we are concerned that the Draft Motion does not mention the plight of the Aramean people in Southeast Turkey.

In the Resolution from 2009, the European Parliament expressly referred to the problems faced by the Arameans with respect to the illegal land expropriation. With great concern this has not been reaffirmed in the Draft Motion, despite the deteriorated situation. In addition, it does not reflect the position taken in Resolution 1704 (2010) by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe on the illicit appropriation of land and the continued lack of a legal status of the Arameans in Turkey.

In the attached table (see “Attachment 2”), the SUA submits comments and recommendations to the Draft Motion. We encourage the European Parliament to take this opportunity and set before its constituents momentous resolutions that will ensure that the problems of the neglected and forgotten Aramean people are seriously considered on equal footing with other minorities in Turkey.

The Syriac Universal Alliance would also be most thankful if the European Union closely monitors the precarious situation of the Aramean (Syriac) people in Turkey and conducts biannual reviews.

We trust that you and your fellow Members of the European Parliament will critically address the urgent issues raised in our letter. Should you wish to discuss any of the points addressed herein, please do not hesitate to contact myself or Mr. Daniel Gabriel, the SUA’s Human Rights and UN NGO Director, on daniel.gabriel@sua‐ngo.org.





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