German Kurd deported from Germany for waving YPG flag

Murat Akgül, 35, was deported for joining protests in Germany with a YPG flag and participating in pro-Kurdish events, German media reported.

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Bavarian authorities deported a Kurdish man who has lived in Nürnberg, Germany, for 30 years to Turkey for waving a flag of the People’s Protection Units (YPG), German media reported.

German website Nordbayern reported that Murat Akgül, 35, a father of four children, was deported for joining protests in Germany with a YPG flag and participating in pro-Kurdish events.

In March 2017, the German Interior Ministry banned the YPG, YPJ (Women’s Protection Units), and PYD (Democratic Union Party) logo’s, suggesting they were linked to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).

This despite the fact the YPG and YPJ fought against the so-called Islamic State as part of the US-led coalition of which Germany is a member.

Not all federal states in Germany have implemented the rule, but Bavaria is one of the toughest states. It even launched a judicial investigation into a cellist who shared an article with a YPG flag on his Facebook.

After Akgül managed to leave the airport, he fled back to Germany through the illegal Balkan-route, and again applied asylum.

When Akgül arrived in Istanbul, the local authorities questioned him. But since Germany did not provide Turkey with a reason for his deportation, and since Akgül remained silent, the Turkish police let him walk free.

The 35-year-old was considered lucky since Turkey considers the YPG to be affiliated to the PKK and he would have most likely been jailed.

Several European Union nationals have been arrested such as German national Osman B. who shared pictures of the PKK on his Facebook and could face years in jail after he was detained on holiday on July 28.

German MP Helin Evrim Sommer, who also serves asa development policy spokesperson for The Left Party parliamentary group, said Akgül’s deportation to Turkey was “negligent” and also a disregard for human rights.

“The decision of deporting him to a country where he might face imprisonment is not just negligent but disregards human rights and accepts potential harm to his physical integrity, freedom, and security,” Sommer told Kurdistan 24.

“That Murat Akgül had to ‘flee’ back to Germany illegally and had to apply for asylum is unbelievable,” she added. “The competent Bavarian authorities urgently need to revise their decisions and compensate Murat Akgül accordingly.”

According to Kerem Schamberger, a well-known pro-left-wing activist and academic from Germany, this case is only the tip of the iceberg.

Apparently, Bavaria wanted to deport 29 people over the last three years, most of them left voluntarily.

They were deported for “being active in the Kurdish issue in some way or another. It’s a big scandal,” Schamberger said. He has also faced judicial pressure for supporting the YPG.

“The German state here focuses on the weakest part of our society: people without a clear status, refugees, former refugees, and migrants who are, in general, in a bad situation in the German society.”

Editing by Karzan Sulaivany