First Thoughts on the Elections in Turkey: A Roundtable
"The active participation of women in the HDP is not an anomaly. The co-presidency system has been a fixture of Kurdish political parties since the pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party (Demokratik Toplum Partisi, or DTP) was founded in 2005. Women have played an important role in the Kurdish freedom movement since the emergence and rise of the PKK in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The writings of the PKK and of its leader, Abdullah Öcalan, lay out a political vision predicated on the emancipation of women and the destruction of patriarchy as essential to the liberation of Kurdistan. In addition to participating in the Kurdish freedom movement as a whole, Kurdish women and Kurdish feminists have developed spaces, such as the Congress of Free Women (Kongra Jinên Azad), independent from men, where they are able to organize themselves and develop the course of their political struggles; the Kurdish freedom movement and the HDP take their lessons and cultivate their political positions accordingly."