Kurdistan

CPT INTERNATIONAL: Train with CPT – Join CPT’s Peacemaker Corps

CPTnet
March 2, 2017
CPT INTERNATIONAL: Train with CPT – Join CPT’s Peacemaker Corps 

 

 

Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) is currently accepting applications for its Peacemaker Corps.  Join us in building partnerships to transform violence and oppression!  

Applicants must be 21 years of age or older and have completed, or plan to complete, a short-term CPT Delegation or internship.  Qualified applicants may be invited to participate in CPT’s intensive, month-long training from 13 July – 13 August 2017 in Chicago, Illinois USA where membership in the Peacemaker Corps is discerned.  Trained Peacemaker Corps members are then eligible to apply for open positions on CPT teams.  

CPT builds partnerships to transform violence and oppression in situations of lethal conflict around the world.  We are committed to work and relationships that: 1) honor and reflect the presence of faith and spirituality, 2) strengthen grassroots initiatives, 3) transform structures of domination and oppression, and 4) embody creative nonviolence and liberating love. 

CPT understands violence to be rooted in systemic structures of oppression.  We are committed to undoing oppressions within our own lives and in the policies and practices of our organization.   

CPT is a Christian-identified organization with multi-faith/spiritually diverse membership.  We seek individuals who are capable, responsible and rooted in faith/spirituality to work for peace as members of violence-reduction teams trained in the disciplines of nonviolence.  We are committed to building a Peacemaker Corps that reflects the rich diversity of the human family in ability, age, class, ethnicity, gender identity, language, national origin, race and sexual orientation. 

APPLICATION DEADLINE: 15 March 2017; direct any questions and send complete application to personnel@cpt.org.

Prayers for Peacemakers, 3 August 2017

Prayers for Peacemakers, 3 August 2017

Pray for the Yazidi people of Iraq whose genocide began three years ago. Pray for freedom and restoration of life for several thousand women and children still in the hands of ISIL.  


How to pray for people undergoing a genocide? What can we pray for?

On 3 August 2014, Daesh (known also as Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL) invaded, pillaged and took control of the city and region of Sinjar (also known as Shingal) in Northern Iraq. Majority of the nearly 170,000 inhabitants of the region identified as members of a unique and ancient ethno-religious group that names themselves Êzidî, or Yazidi.  Daesh massacred around 5,000 men and took into slavery over 7,000 women and children. The rest of the people fled to a nearby mountain where many died of thirst, hunger and temperatures reaching above 48C/120F.

In the following days and weeks over a hundred thousand Êzidî survivors reached the relative safety of Kurdistan region of Iraq, while thousands stayed in displaced peoples' camps across the border in Syria, or on the Sinjar mountain. Thousands of others embarked on a grim journey towards the European Union.
 
Today, most of Shingal, though free of ISIL, lies in ruins and desolate. Several thousand women and children that Daesh kidnapped and enslaved found freedom or death. Several thousand continue to endure slavery and sexual exploitation. Their relatives keep on searching for them.

We might pray for Êzidî women, youth and children who have endured the seemingly unbearable and hope that they may find new life, freedom, healing, justice and peace. We might pray that the families be able to reunite with their loved ones. We can carry in our prayers Êzidî peacemakers who have reclaimed their lives despite displacement and unimaginable suffering and loss, and established initiatives and organizations of support, accompaniment, justice, and communal restoration and healing.   

Yazidi girl recites a poem in commemoration of the genocide

IRAQI KURDISTAN: Take ownership of your home

CPTnet

26 June 2017

IRAQI KURDISTAN: Take ownership of your home

By: Daan Savert

On 15 May 2017, we as delegates of the CPT Iraqi Kurdistan spring delegation visited Basta, one of the 63 villages that dot the high mountain area of the Pishdar region of Iraqi Kurdistan. Kak Bapir, the village leader, and his family welcomed us warmly. “The people of CPT are no longer guests here,” Kak Bapir said. “So take ownership of your home.”

In the 1980s the regime of Saddam Hussein displaced thousands of civilians inhabiting the mountains and lowlands of the Pishdar region. After the fall of the Ba’ath regime in 2003 the people were glad to return to and rebuild their homes and villages. However, in 2007 a new period of misery started, when both the Turkish and the Iranian governments began to bomb the region. In 2012 Iranian cross-border artillery bombardments ceased but Turkish air strikes continue until this day. The latest attack took place on 6 April 2017.

Over the last ten years Turkish and Iranian bombs and rockets killed twenty people and destroyed more than one hundred village houses. The farmers and shepherds had to repeatedly abandon and flee their homes. The people of the region suffer from the loss of animals, destruction of homes, businesses and agriculture and a delayed electrical project. Because of the bombings there is a lack of teachers, since they are afraid to come to the villages to teach the children. All of this has resulted in a lot of mental health problems in the region. 

 Kak Bapir and delagates

Photo: Kak Bapir and CPT delagation.

CPT Position Opening: COMMUNICATIONS COORDINATOR

CPT Position Opening:

COMMUNICATIONS COORDINATOR

 

Christian Peacemaker Teams seeks a full-time, talented, creative and detail-oriented Communications Coordinator to facilitate amplifying the voices of our partners and articulating the organization’s mission, vision and values through the framework of undoing oppressions.  The position involves working closely with field teams to strategize and coordinate CPT’s story-telling vehicles and mechanisms in ways that engage world-wide supporters to take action for peace.

 

Responsibilities include coordinating the ongoing development, assessment and implementation of organization-wide communications plans, managing the organization’s web platforms and social media presence, producing promotional, educational and fundraising materials, and participating in the overall work of CPT’s Administrative Team which cares for the whole “web” of the organization.  This person works closely with field teams and others in the areas of development and outreach.  The position involves some international travel to meetings and project sites each year.

 

Candidates should demonstrate excellent writing, editing and verbal communication capabilities in English, commitment to grow in the work of undoing oppressions, and ability to work independently and collaboratively as part of a dispersed team across continents.

 

CPT is a Christian-identified organization with multi-faith/spiritually diverse membership.  We seek individuals who are capable, responsible and rooted in faith/spirituality to work for peace as members of teams trained in the disciplines of nonviolence.  We are committed to building an organization that reflects the rich diversity of the human family in ability, age, class, ethnicity, gender identity, language, national origin, race and sexual orientation.

SALARY: $24,000/yr; 100% employer-paid health, dental and vision coverage; four weeks annual vacation.

 

LOCATION: negotiable; Chicago preferred.

 

APPLICATIONS DUE BY: June 25, 2017

 

START DATE: negotiable; July 13 preferred

 

TO APPLY: please submit electronically, in English, the following to hiring@cpt.org

  • Cover letter

  • Resume

  • Two-page English writing sample

  • A list of three references with e-mail and daytime telephone numbers

  • Links to multimedia content including videos, infographics, interactives, etc.

IRAQI KURDISTAN: Drying up Kormor's Water of Life

CPTnet

12 June 2017

IRAQI KURDISTAN: Drying up Kormor's Water of Life

by Weldon Nisly

Springs flowed with the water of life for the village of Kormor. For generations springs supplied abundant water to sustain Kormor's people, plants, and animals in this arid land of the Kirkuk region of Iraqi Kurdistan. No more. All of Kormor's springs have dried up. Where cool spring waters once flowed, now only thistles abound in sun-baked ground.

Dana Gas

The flames of fire from the land that has been taken over by Dana Gas. Photo by: Rezhiar Fakhir

Kormor's springs flowed with the water of life until Dana Gas arrived. Showing no concern for village water and life, Dana drilled a deep well to draw the water they needed to pump oil and gas out of the ground. Kormor's water of life was sacrificed to the insatiable corporate thirst for profit and global thirst for energy. 

After the U. S. occupation of Iraq in 2003, Dana Gas arrived in Kormor. With regional and national political support they confiscated 4,000 dunams of land owned by villagers. Then they closed off 10 km of road for their own use forcing villagers to drive 40 km around the drilling site over rough roads heavily damaged by the company’s semi tankers. 

Prayers for Peacemakers. 7 June 2017

Prayers for Peacemakers. 7 June 2017

More and more people are becoming aware of the consequences of the industrialization of our world. The pollution of the air, soil and water resources has increased notably because of the so called development. Extremely dry seasons, prolonged cold winters, numerous floods and landslides are just some examples of the impact of the massive industrial production, global scale transportation and abuse of natural resources. For this reason, the country representatives signed an agreement to continue working for and supporting the development while decreasing the pollution and the global warming. But we need to understand that it's the consumption and production of things that we perceive we need that takes away or destroys what we all truly need: healthy and sufficient food and water, clean air and respect for life.   

Let us pray for our world, for clean air and water. Let us pray for those who struggle to protect what is left and to regenerate what is lost. Let us pray for those who make decisions that will impact not only our present but also our future and the future of the life on Earth. Let us pray for each one of us to learn more, to care more, and to do more. We all deserve a better planet and many of us bear responsibility for the disasters that take place not only where we live but also in other parts of the world. So help us God.

 Mocoa, Colombia Landslide

Psalm 96:10-13

Say among the nations, "The LORD reigns." The world is firmly established, it cannot be moved; he will judge the peoples with equity. Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad; let the sea resound, and all that is in it; let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them. Then all the trees of the forest will sing for joy; they will sing before the LORD, for he comes, he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world in righteousness and the peoples in his truth. 

IRAQI KURDISTAN NEWSLETTER: Spring 2017- Border Bombing, Oil Issues and more!!

 

Iraqi Kurdistan

 
We wish all of our Muslim teammates, CPTers, Supporters and friends a happy Ramadan. 
 
Border Bombing
After the peace agreement broke between the Turkish state and Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in 2015, Turkey has regularly bombed villages in the mountains of Iraqi Kurdistan. The Turkish state claims they are only targeting the PKK. However, Christian Peacemaker Teams-Iraqi Kurdistan (CPT-IK) has visited many of these villages and documented that Turkish warplanes have not just bombed PKK but have also bombed villages and surrounding areas, including burning many vineyards,orchards, and grazing lands. Furthermore, there have been civilian casualties and many villagers have lost their animals and sources of income. The bombings continue to this day and the CPT IK team continues to investigate and document Turkey's bombing violations. The team has written many stories about Kurdish civilians who have been heavily impacted by the bombardments, including a story in May of this year about Turkey's bombing near the village of Murkijea. 
Kak Bapir from Basta vilage hosted Christian Peacemaker Teams-Iraqi Kurdistan (CPT) at his home. 
Kak Bapir (right) talking with Michele Naar-Obed (left) and CPT member Latif Hars (center) about Turkish bombardments in the Basta region. Photo by: Gabe Soares
Christian Peacemaker Teams-Iraqi Kurdistan (CPT IK) team members with Michelle Naar Obed visited one of our partners, Kak Bapir from Basta village. Basta has long been impacted by the bombardment from both the Turkish and Iranian governments. Kak Bapir told CPTers that they are still being bombed by the Turkish government and expressed his wish that the bloody bombardments would stop. Kak Bapir told the story of the villagers from Basta and how their way of life is being disrupted by the ongoing bombardments. He asked that CPT help amplify their voices to make the international community aware of their plight and to accompany them to find new ways to ask the Turkish state to stop these bombardments so that villagers from Basta can live in peace. 

Prayers for peacemakers. 3 June 2017

Prayers for peacemakers. 3 June 2017 

"Ramadan Kareem" to our Muslim CPT members, partners and friends who together with the multitude of Muslim communities around the world join in celebration of the holy month of Ramadan. 

Those who observe Ramadan abstain from food, drink and other physical needs from dawn until sunset. However, the essence of Ramadan is much deeper than just fasting. It is a time to purify one's soul, refocus attention on God and practice self-discipline and sacrifice. 

Last weekend, two bombs exploded in Baghdad, Iraq, just at the time when families were breaking fast and beginning to eat. One of the bombs exploded at the bazaar, the central market of the city, nearby a retirement office, and the other one in an ice cream shop where mostly children and teenagers were celebrating life. Another explosion happened in Kabul, Afghanistan, in a diplomatic zone. These horrible attacks against our fellow and dear human beings target also the meaning of Ramadan.

Ramadan In Palestine

Today let us pray for all who observe Ramadan so that they can do so in peace, free of fear and risk of bombs, airstrikes, all kinds of violence and restrictive checkpoints. Let us pray for the family members and friends of the innocent victims. Let us pray for their souls so that they may find comfort and peace.

IRAQI KURDISTAN: As adults, we are just afraid for our children; residents of Merkejia speak with CPT about the impacts of the Turkish bombings.

CPTnet

29 May 2017

IRAQI KURDISTAN: As adults, we are just afraid for our children; residents of Merkejia speak with CPT about the impacts of the Turkish bombings.

by: Julie Brown

The explosion was massive, even through the small video on Kak Najib’s phone we could see the devastation and huge plume of smoke that engulfed the whole side of a nearby mountain. This was just one of many bombs that fell on the area surrounding the village of Merkejia last fall.

Merkajia is an Assyrian village that lies within the northern mountains of Iraqi Kurdistan. These mountains are a dividing point between Turkey and Iraqi Kurdistan as well as a battleground between the Turkish government and The Kurdistan Workers' Party or PKK.  While media sometimes gives nod to this decades long conflict, the realities of life for those like the villagers of Merkejia, people whose communities are on the frontlines, are rarely told.

"Last November, the Turkish airplanes dropped a barrage of bombs on the area surrounding this small village", Kak Najib, the Mukhtar (village leader) of Merkejia, told CPT on 11 May 2017. The first bombs fell in the evening when Kak Najib and his family were in their house. He explained that at first they stayed inside their home and took shelter but as the bombs continued to fall they went outside afraid that one could hit the house and it could collapse on them. The women and children left the village and only the men stayed behind to protect their homes and property. “As Assyrians we believe that we will die one day and that we should not be afraid of death. I have seen many wars, Saddam forced me to go to Kuwait.  As adults, we are just afraid for our children,” he explained.

The bombs shattered all the windows in every home in Merkejia and cracked several walls. Kak Najib pointed to a large crack in his home just over a large portrait of Jesus hanging in his family room.  When CPT asked how people could show solidarity with the villagers of Merkejia he simply said, “Let people know that we are being bombed.” 

                                                          Wall inside Kak Najib´s house   

                                             Walls inside Kak Najib's house in Merkajia. Photo by: Julie Brow 

Prayers for Peacemakers. 26 May 2017

Prayers for Peacemakers. 26 May 2017

Oftentimes, we are not thankful for all the blessings in our life and we do not recognize the privileges we have. When we are able to have a job, to have a legal status, to feel safe and free, to be healthy or able-bodied, for example. When often strongly realize and feel their lack but not so much their presence.

Today we want to remember all these privileges and blessings. We would like to encourage you to embrace the positive situations in our lives and share our love and solidarity with people who do not experience the same. Let us pray for those of us who are not physically or emotionally well. Let us pray for all who are seeking meaningful jobs to be able to thrive and support our families and communities. Let us pray for the undocumented people and those fleeing wars and oppression to be given asylum and receive respect for their humanity and rights. Let us pray for all who live in the midst of war to be able to find strength to continue resist violence and death. Let us pray for and support each other in our needs and difficulties so that we may find a path forward and overcome what stands in our way.

Yezidi family

Luke 17:20-21

One day the Pharisees asked Jesus, “When will the Kingdom of God come?” Jesus replied, “The Kingdom of God can’t be detected by visible signs. You won’t be able to say, ‘Here it is!’ or ‘It’s over there!’ For the Kingdom of God is already among you.”