Trump and the U.S. government supposedly gave Turkey the green light on military strikes in Syria, again, attacking Kurdish forces, stating that they are developing terrorism in the area.
Kurdish musicians have also felt the consequences. Members of ‘Dewran’ who performs songs in Turkish language at weddings, as well as members of another band, have been detained on grounds of inciting terrorism with their propaganda.
We at Shouts call for these artists’ immediate release.
Unfortunately, the above mentioned musicians are not the only examples of artist oppression for the Kurdish people. Find more examples below and also check out our interview with Lee Brickley about his album ‘Songs for Rojava’.
Mehdi Rajabian once served two years, of a larger sentence, in prison in Tehran, Iran, for making music. The oppression the government shows artists in the country is immense but some people, like Mehdi, continue to create beauty despite the threat of incarceration.
His latest work needs to be shared by the rest of us who are not facing the same hardship. This beautiful album, which can be streamed below, features artists from 12 middle eastern countries and includes songs recorded during war and during an escape on a boat by a refugee.
Since the 2014 military coup took place in Thailand the protest band Faiyen have not been able to perform live. After starting to receive threats they fled into hiding in Laos until finally, a few days ago, they arrived in France where they have sought political asylum.
Thailand upholds what is known as the lese-majeste law which forbids anyone from speaking negatively about, threatening or insulting the Thai royal family. Several activists have gone missing since 2014 and Faiyen did not want to become a part of an ever growing list of disappearances.
Being able to now perform in France the band is already using their voice and talent to spread the word about their oppressive government. A few days ago they organised a protest concert outside the Thai embassy in Paris along with other activists and performed some of their songs.