NGOs protest missile shield
Nongovernmental organizations protested the NATO proposal to deploy a missile shield in Turkey. Activists from various organizations gathered in Istanbul to demand the government to reject the proposa
Turkey 10.11.2010

The plans for missile shields, which are proposed to be deployed to several countries including Turkey, will be discussed at the NATO Summit in the Portuguese capital Lisbon between 19-20 November.

The IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation, MAZLUMDER, ÖZGÜRDER, Anatolian Platform, Akabe Foundation, Hizmet Foundation, Medeniyet Association, and AKEV took part in the protest rally. 

Speaking at the rally, Bülent Yıldırım, president of the IHH, said Israel’s empire of fear had collapsed with the Mavi Marmara initiative and added “Israel was proved not to be as strong as it was thought. NATO was supposed to respond to an attack against its members. Turkey is a member of NATO, but why the organization failed to react to the Israeli attack against citizens of Turkey? Why didn’t it do anything to prevent the raid? We oppose the missile shield project and support the government’s zero problem policy with its neighbors. The government should not give into pressure. This hurdle will be overcome somehow.” 

Mazlum-Der chairperson Ahmet Faruk Ünsal said “If nuclear activity is a danger why do western countries do it? Deployment of missile shield in case of existence of nuclear weapons in Iran aims to protect Israel not a NATO member. Poland and the Czech Republic did not accept the project. We will not accept it either. I am calling on the government. We are aware of pressure you are coming under. Do not give into pressure. The people will stand by you.”

The missile shield project aims to taint the Turkey territory, Özgür-Der executive Hülya Şekerci said, “We oppose imperialist projects and say ‘no.’ The government should not be fooled by such games. We want the government to be a shield for Iran and Syria not Israel and the United States.” 

Murat Özer, a member of the Mazlum-Der Istanbul branch, read out the joint press release. Özer recalled the missile shield was rejected by Poland and the Czech Republic and said “It is obvious that the decision to be made regarding the missile shield during the NATO Summit in the Portuguese capital Lisbon between 19-20 November will be historic both for Turkey and the entire Middle East. Acting by its own security perceptions, the United States wants to deploy a missile shield in Turkey to rein in developments in Iran, Syria, Lebanon and Palestine, and to protect Israel. The proposal that is made to Turkey under the auspices of NATO is in reality the job of a guard. Turkey is coming under increasing pressure to approve the missile shield project of NATO, which has long been shaped by imported threat perceptions. In this case, Turkey will have to choose between two different missions, one being the continuance of zero problem policy with its neighbors and the other being assuming the role of a battle country in an order project whose real target is brotherly nations.”

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