On September 30, sixty-four (64) environmental organisations from Turkey, Greece and Cyprus (plus some additional ones in other countries, mainly through the Kurdish and Turkish diaspora) agreed on the statement that follows below. Since then the number has increased to 68.
Greece, Turkey and Cyprus are facing the biggest military confrontation in decades. In the course of September, the naval fleets of Greece and Turkey were facing each other in full alert for a whole number of days. Submarines, the air-force and the whole of the army were also in full alert.
After a small intermission the two countries are again, today, confronting each other in the south east Aegean. A “hot episode” as is called is considered as extremely likely and possible on any day.
The root of this is not just the unpredictable character of Tayyip Erdogan and his regime, as is often presented by the media, it is the fact that there is a real clash of material interests in the region. The Turkish ruling class has never accepted the “domination” of the Aegean Sea by more than 2000 Greek islands and will not simply leave the island of Cyprus (of which it occupies 40% since the invasion of 1974) as the Greek and Greek Cypriot side is demanding. The discovery of hydrocarbons in East Mediterranean has laid the basis for a huge escalation of these antagonisms. The agreements between Cyprus, Israel, Egypt and Greece to exploit these deposits caused the angry response of the Turkish regime, which was left out of the loot, as would have been expected.
It is entirely clear that capitalism cannot solve these antagonisms which have been going on for decades. The political and trade union organisations of the working class in the 3 countries have a duty to fight against nationalism in the three countries, against war mongering, for peace and in the end for the overthrow of the capitalist system, for the creation of a socialist federation of the 3 countries as part of a socialist European federation, on a fraternal, equal and democratic basis. They have the duty to fight against the extraction of hydrocarbons, both because they represent a threat to the environment and because they aggravate national antagonisms and threaten peace in the region. But they don’t.
The leadership of the major (parliamentary) left parties and the trade unions in the 3 countries take no initiative in this direction. They do not have the conception of internationalism, solidarity and socialism, but tail end the “national” interests of the corresponding ruling classes.
In the vacuum that exists a number of environmental organisations have taken the initiative to sign a common declaration, which points in the direction described above. It is an important initiative which can provide common ground for common initiatives in the 3 countries. It is something on which the forces of the radical left and Marxism can build, in the direction of new radical left and mass revolutionary socialist parties.
The joint statement of the 68 environmental organisations is the following.
Stop Climate Disaster, Keep It In The Ground!
Climate disaster is real.
Early this year Australia was burning, now California and Siberia are burning. The Greenland Ice Shelf is melting, the North Pole may soon be ice free. The Thwaites glacier in Antartica is melting and that alone threatens a 65cm rise in world sea levels.
The World Wildlife Fund reports a 70% fall in animal populations in the last 40 years. Sudan is flooded.
All over the world, climate change is already threatening food production, and rising temperatures and extreme weather threaten human life. To keep global warming to a still dangerous 1.5 °C we need to reduce global carbon dioxide emissions by half by 2030 and to zero by 2050.
Even to keep global heating at 2 °C, we should be planning to use at most 16% of known fossil fuel reserves, so the development of new reserves must stop immediately.
The peoples of the Mediterranean and Black Sea states have a common interest. We do not need to fight one another for these oil and gas reserves. We need to work together to make a sustainable energy policy for the region and stop our rulers from fighting one another for resources that should, in any case, be left in the ground.
It is sheer hypocrisy for our governments to participate in “climate summits” under the umbrella of the United Nations and promise emission reduction, then compete with one another to extract even more fossil fuels from under the earth’s crust. The Turkish government has proclaimed a “miracle” because there has been a natural gas discovery under the Turkish sector of the Black Sea. In the Mediterranean, all the coastal states, and some major powers, are saber rattling over fossil fuel reserves under the sea. These dangerous rivalries threaten the safety of all the peoples of our countries Energy policies determined by profit, not human need, have resulted in both expensive energy for the people and a looming climate disaster. “Consume or pay” contracts mean that even all the fossil fuel paid for is not being consumed.
There is no rational need for more discovery. We need to take energy out of the hands of the profiteers and put it under the democratic control of the peoples of the region. We need local democratic control of the production and consumption of energy. We need to stop the destruction of our local and regional environment for energy projects. We need to ensure energy justice, with distribution according to social need, not profit. We need to end private profiteering in energy by taking energy production and distribution back into democratically controlled public ownership.
We say no to new fossil fuel exploration and development of reserves! We say NO to conflict between our countries! We say YES to climate justice and to peace!
- Ankara Kent ve Ekoloji Savunması (Ankara Urban and Ecology Defense) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Antalya Ekoloji Meclisi (Antalya Ecology Assembly) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Başlangıç Ekoloji (Baslangıc Ecology) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Burhaniye Çevre Platformu (Burhaniye Environment Platform) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Doğanın Çocukları (Children of Nature) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Ege Çevre ve Kültür Platformu (Agean Environment and Culture Platform) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Ekoloji Politik (EcologyPolitics) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Eko-Öğrenci Hareketi (Eco-Student Movement) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Halkların Demokratik Kongresi Ekoloji Meclisi (Democratic Congress of People’s, Ecology Assembly) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Hasankeyf’i Yaşatma Girişimi (İnitiative to Sustenence of Hasankeyf) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Her Yer Kazdağları (Everywhere Ida Mountains) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Kazdağları İstanbul Dayanışması (İda Mountains İstanbul Solidarity) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Kazdağı Doğal ve Kültürel Varlıkları Koruma Derneği (Ida Mountains Association for the Conservation of Natural and Cultural Heritage) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Mezopotamya Ekoloji Hareketi (Mesopotamia Ecology Movement) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Munzur Çevre Derneği (Munzur Environment Assc.) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Muğla Çevre Derneği (Mugla Environment Assc.) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Polen Ekoloji (Polen Ecology) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Taksim Gezi Parkı Koruma ve Güzelleştirme Derneği (Taksim Gezi Park Sustenence Assc.) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Yaşam ve Dayanışma Yolcuları (Life and Solidarity Travellers) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Yeryüzü Derneği (Earth Assc.) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Yeşil Direniş Ekoloji ve Yaşam Gazete (Green Insurgency, Ecology and Life) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Yeşil Sol İklim Çalışma Grubu (Green-Left Climate Workgroup) (Türkiye – Turkey – Τουρκία)
- Επιτροπή Αγώνα Θεσσαλονίκης ενάντια στην εξόρυξη χρυσού (Struggle committee of Thessaloniki against gold mining) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Επιτροπή Αγώνα Θεσσαλονίκης Ενάντια στην Καύση Απορριμμάτων (Struggle committee of Thessaloniki against waste incineration) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Χωματερή stop -πολίτες εν δράσει (Landfill stop- citizens in action in Petroupoli Athens) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Δίκτυο ενημέρωσης πολιτών ενάντια στις εξορύξεις, ΕΞΟΡΥΞΕΙΣ STOP Πρέβεζα (Network for information of citizens against mining- Extraction Stop Preveza) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Πρωτοβουλία Πολιτών ενάντια στην καύση σκουπιδιών No Burn (Initiative of citizens against waste incineration “No Burn”- Volos) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Νέοι για το περιβάλλον (Youth for the environment- Volos) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Ποδονίφτης, ρε(ύ)μα κριτικής των καιρών και δράσης (Podoniftis- stream of critics of the times and action) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- ΙΛΙΣ-ΣΟΣ (ILIS-SOS) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Μικρογεωγραφίες (Microgeographies) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Κίνηση για την προστασία και ανάδειξη του μεγάλου ρέματος της Ραφήνας (Move for the protection and the promotion of the stream of Rafina- Athens) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Περιβαλλοντική οργάνωση Καλλιστώ (Environmental organization Kallisto) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Οικολογικό δίκτυο (Ecology network) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Πρωτοβουλία Αγώνα Ζωγράφου (Initiative of struggle in Zografou- Athens) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- ΦΥΣΗτήρες (Fisitires) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Πρωτοβουλία Ενάντια στην Περιβαλλοντική Καταστροφή και την Κλιματική Αλλαγή (Initiative against the environmental destruction and climate change) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Κίνηση Πολιτών Ηλιούπολης (Ilioupoli citizen move- Athens) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Λαϊκή Συνέλευση κατοίκων Κολωνού-Σεπολίων-Ακαδημίας Πλάτωνα (Popular assembly of the citizens of Kolonos-Sepolia-Akadimias Platona in Athens) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- ΡεμΑττική (Stream Athens) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Πανελλαδική Φιλοζωική και Περιβαλλοντική Ομοσπονδία (National animal welfare and environment federation) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Οικολογική Παρέμβαση Ηρακλείου (Ecology intervention of Heraklion) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Δίκτυο Πολιτών για τη διάσωση του ρέματος της Πικροδάφνης (Network of citizens for the rescue of the stream of Pikrodaphne) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Νομαδική Αρχιτεκτονική (Nomadic Architecture) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Πρωτοβουλία κατοίκων Πεντέλης – Μελισσίων. (Initiative of residents in Penteli-Melisia (Athens) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Κίνηση Πολιτών Χορτιάτη (Move of citizens of Chortiatis (Thessaloniki) (Yunanistan- Greece – Ελλάδα)
- Anatropi Mag (Περιοδικό Ανατροπή) (Kıbrıs – Cyrprus – Κύπρος)
- Climate crisis CY website (Kıbrıs – Cyrprus – Κύπρος)
- No Gold Initiative – Πρωτοβουλία Ενάντια στην Εξόρυξη Χρυσού (Kıbrıs – Cyrprus – Κύπρος)
- KTÖEOS – Kıbrıs Türk Orta Eğitim Öğretmenler Sendikası (Turkish Cypriot -Secondary Teachers Union – Συνδικάτο εκπαιδευτικών δευτεροβάθμιας εκπαίδευσης) (Kıbrıs – Cyrprus – Κύπρος)
- Kıbrıs Türk Biyologlar Birliği (Turkish Cypriot Biologists Association – –Τουρκοκυπριακός Σύνδεσμος Βιολόγων) (Kıbrıs – Cyrprus – Κύπρος)
- Sol Hareket – (Left Movement) Αριστερό Κίνημα (Kıbrıs – Cyrprus – Κύπρος)
- Avli – αυλή – avlı (Kıbrıs – Cyrprus – Κύπρος)
- Aplaneta (İspanya)
- Attac France (Fransa)
- Comité De Apoyo A Kurdistán – Madrid (Support To Kurdistan Commitee – Madrid)
- Ekologistak Martxan (Bask Ülkesi)
- Ecosocialist Horizons (www.ecosocialisthorizons.com)
- European Water Movement (Avrupa)
- Humat Dijlah (Irak)
- Rojava Azadi Madrid (İspanya)
- Save The Tigris Campaign (Irak)
- Scottish Solidarity With Kurdistan
- Women Defend Rojava-Madrid (İspanya)