NEWS

Kurds in Brussels campaign for meeting with Öcalan / ANF

25/07/2016 - 18:14 0
Kurds Mobilise for Öcalan

Reaction against the isolation of Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan continues growing among Kurdish circles as the application to meet with him by his lawyers was rejected once again today.

Kurdish political parties and NGOs have made statements demanding a meeting with the PKK leader, while tens of thousands of Kurds continue demonstrating across Europe and Kurdistan. Several campaigns on Twitter have also been launched.

Concerns were raised about Öcalan's wellbeing following the military coup attempt in Turkey and fears were not allayed by the statement from the Justice Ministry which said Öcalan was well and safe.

A decision made by an enforcement judge in Bursa on Friday, banned all visitations, written and telephone contact with Öcalan and three other inmates on Imrali Island Prison for the duration of the 3-month state-of-emergency. Lawyers said the decision was illegal and arbitrary.

The Kurdistan National Congress (KNK) based in Brussels published an open letter to the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT), which has visited Öcalan in the past. In the letter the KNK demanded an urgent meeting with the Kurdish leader saying:

At this critical moment, we call upon the CPT to uphold its responsibilities. The CPT must eliminate all concerns for Mr. Abdullah Ocalan’s safety and well-being. The CPT must meet with Mr. Ocalan but also demand that his lawyers and family are allowed to meet with him too.

For millions of people, Mr Abdullah Ocalan is their political leader and his well-being is of the utmost concern for them. Any hesitance and inaction by the CPT would aggravate the concerns which are legitimate and humane. To alleviate these concerns, the CPT must act with the utmost urgency and demand to meet Mr Abdullah Ocalan face to face at Imrali Island.

The KNK's letter also criticised the Turkish government for ending the resolution process of the Kurdish question and said that it was the "atrocities and anti-democratic policies implemented by the AKP in Turkey and Kurdistan that paved the way to the coup attempt of 15 July. Following the failure of the coup, President Erdogan has extended this destructive strategy all over Turkey."

There has been speculation that if the coup had been successful, the putschists would have targeted Öcalan on Imrali Island to trigger civil-war in the country. It has been confirmed that helicopters were seen flying over Imrali for 45 minutes during the coup attempt.