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Protest shuts down rail lines around Manchester station

RAIL LINES were occupied at Manchester's Piccadilly Station yesterday, shutting down the network, as emergency demos took place across Britain against intensifying attacks on Afrin by the Turkish state.

The demonstrations were called as the Turkish military drew nearer to Afrin city in northern Syria, having taken over nearby villages.

Kurdistan Solidarity Campaign called for activists to defend Afrin in London, Cambridge, Liverpool and Manchester.

Piccadilly Station was occupied from around midday until 3pm, while protesters in Cambridge shut down the main road through the city centre by linking arms and forming a human chain.

In London, protesters gathered at Kings Cross station before marching to 10 Downing Street after speeches highlighting a "genocide" being carried out against the Kurdish people.

A 24-hour sit-in is ongoing outside the Prime Minister’s home in Downing Street calling for the British government to end its arms deals with Turkey and tacit support for the invasion.

Turkey's assault against Afrin under on the grounds of a "war against terrorism" reached new heights on Saturday night as its forces continued to extend their operation beyond military targets, risking civilian lives in the face of a massacre.

Protesters are also demanding a no-fly zone over Afrin as Turkish air strikes have previously taken place against civilian populated areas.

Activists hope to mobilise as many people as possible to raise further attention about the attacks and to increase pressure on the British government.

Solidarity with the People Of Turkey (SPOT) released a statement calling on British politicians, trade unionists, campaign groups, democrats, intellectuals and “all those who side with peace” to take action.

“The people of Afrin are fighting for their lives and innocent people are on the brink of being massacred by the Turkish state," the group said.

“Weapons provided by the West, including the UK, are also responsible for the death of innocent people in Afrin and we must expose our government’s complicity in these attacks.

“We need to take action before its too late.”

The Turkish offensive in Afrin has been ongoing for more than 50 days with thousands of casualties.

International support for the Kurdish cause has been widespread and follows earlier protests held in 33 European cities.

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