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Kurds march on OPCW headquarters over Turkey's alleged use of chemical weapons

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Policemen detain a man after a group of protesters, some of them carrying flags of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), demonstrated near the premises of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) on Johan de Wittlaan Street in The Hague, the Netherlands, on December 3, 2021. (Photo by AFP)

Kurdish people have marched on the headquarters of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in the Netherlands to protest what they alleged to be Turkey’s use of chemical weapons in northern Iraq.

Carrying flags of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) militant group and banners, dozens of people staged a rally outside the OPCW building in The Hague on Friday.

Dutch police arrested 50 demonstrators who got past security to enter the grounds of the OPCW.

"At around noon, a large group of protesters stormed a building... We have arrested these protesters. Several police units are present at the building," police said on Twitter. "The approximately 50 arrested demonstrators who were on the site have been transferred to a police location."

The Associated Press quoted police spokesperson Dick Goijert as saying that a Kurdish group called DEM NED had organized the protest against the alleged use of chemical weapons by Turkish troops.

Turkey denies using chemical weapons in its conflict with the PKK, which it has designated as a terrorist outfit, along with the United States and the European Union.

The protest came as the PKK claimed in a statement on Thursday that Turkey had repeatedly used chemical weapons in northern Iraq.

Turkey has been militarily engaged in northern Iraq with the purported aim of fighting the PKK. The militant group has since 1984 been engaged in armed conflict against Ankara with the aim of carving out an independent state in southeastern Turkey. More than 40,000 people have been killed during the three-decade-long conflict.

A shaky ceasefire between the PKK and the Turkish government collapsed in July 2015. Attacks on Turkish security forces have been carried out ever since.

The Baghdad government has condemned Ankara's ongoing military operations in northern Iraq.

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