Female rebels from Kurdistan Worker’s Party,  the PKK with Marxist-Leninist roots, although ideology has changes today

The woman’s importance in the struggle for freedom was manifested in the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK)’s ideology from the very beginning. Instead of evolving as a side branch of the party ideology, women’s liberation is a central part of the PKK’s theory and practice. Party leader Abdullah Öcalan refers to the enslavement of women as the worst condition of the Middle East and claims that national freedom will never be possible without women’s liberation. The Kurdish woman is subject to double-oppression: the nationalist Turkish system excludes her on ethnic terms, while the patriarchal features of society oppress her based on gender discrimination. Turkish feminism ignored the specific needs of Kurdish women, and regarded all women as Turks, while other Kurdish national movements prior to the PKK enforced sexist structures that oppress women and exclude their agency in the national struggle. Kurdish men are furthermore more able to participate in the Turkish system than women, who do not enjoy the same social mobility and remain further excluded. The overriding discrimination on multiple layers is perhaps the trigger for the Kurdish woman’s freedom manifesto.

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