The Movement of “No for Now” for referendum on independence of Kurdistan was announced on Tuesday, calling for the delay of referendum on September 25.
The Spokesman of “No for Now” Movement, Rabun Maruf, said during a press conference in Sulaimani that the planned referendum will not serve the interests of the Kurdistan Region’s people.
“This referendum is not a step towards independence and a democratic, republic and justice state,” Maruf added. “It is also a historic and dangerous mistake.”
Two years have passed since the Kurdistan Parliament was deactivated illegally by the military force of a political party. Despite this event, a number of parties met on July 7, 2017 without legal backing or a national consensus and they set September 25 as the date to hold an illegitimate referendum.
By issuing such a decision, this group of political parties has sharply divided the people of the Kurdistan Region into two opposing segments: Those who will vote “No” and those who will vote “Yes.” This sidelines efforts toward national conciliation between the different constituencies over a shared national interest.
The group lobbying for “Yes” voters has launched a campaign which began on July 7 to gain support for the “Yes” vote in the illegitimate referendum through their domestic and local institutions as well as through their effective party-affiliated media outlets.
A group with the aim of voting “No,” which includes numerous social and political individuals, has been formed unofficially and is supported through various means by thousands of ordinary people in the Kurdistan Region, as well as by several other politicians, authors, journalists and civil and social activists.
Those who support an independent Kurdistan, who support the rule of law and the formation of a democratic and upright country, do not believe it is suitable to hold the referendum and consider this move against the historic aim of our nation. Today we officially announce the start of the “No for Now” campaign in an effort to collect and organize a broad, mobile social group.
We as the Movement “No for Now” believe this referendum does not serve the fundamental interests of the people of the Kurdistan Region. This referendum is not a move toward the independence and the formation of a democratic and upright country but is instead a dangerous and historic mistake which will result in the abortion of this aim and which will lead toward further division. It will drag our nation into a bloody military conflict and toward disaster.
This is a move which will lead to a much deteriorated international and regional partnership instead of a stronger backing on an international level for the deserved rights of our nation. Those who back a “Yes” vote have been formed by those parties who have ruled the Kurdistan Region since the revolution of 1991 but they have imposed the ugliest model of ruling in the history of humanity against our nation.
On the one hand, the goal of the “Yes” vote faction is to sideline the region’s pending issue of the presidency and the risky failures of governance. On the other hand, a strategic aim of this faction is to occupy the fate of the public and waste the region’s opportunity toward independence for the sake of a certain group of officials and select political families.
From the perspective of the key interests of our nation, including all political, religious and social constituencies, we as the movement “No for Now” demand –
First: The reversal of the decision to hold the referendum on the independence of Kurdistan on September 25. The referendum must be held when the proceedings for an independent state are already fulfilled. There is a need for the democratic means of a successful state to be met before a referendum of independence. The basis of establishing a state must include a constitution and the social promise for the status of our nation. Peaceful and political coexistence between all different constituencies in the Kurdistan Region must exist.
Second: If the faction of those backing the “Yes” vote push for the referendum to be held despite the interest of our nation, we call on voters in our region to vote “No” for this referendum. A “Yes” vote in the referendum means a “Yes” to tyranny and the monopoly of authority. It means a “Yes” to 26 years of Kurdish rule, 26 years of oppression, the lack of freedom, injustice, corruption and the theft of the region’s fortune. A “Yes” vote means a “Yes to the lack of the dignity of the people of Kurdistan. “Yes” in the referendum means “Yes” to a future identical to that of 26 years ago. It is a future in which our people will become enslaved and will become the means of serving the dangerous ambitions of cheapskate families involved in politics.
A “No for Now” vote means “No” to the failure of the experience of the Kurdistan Regional Government. “No” to a kleptocrat government of political businessmen. A “No” vote means “No” to selective politics of authority, the selectiveness by which they have proven they do not have anything to serve us except vulnerability and self destruction. “No for Now” means no to poverty, military conflict, vulnerability, war, destruction and bloodshed. We as the “No for Now” movement call upon our nation to support the campaign for the sake of the future status of our generation, to secure our lovely nation from disaster and oppression.