Freedom for Abdullah Ocalan Peace in Kurdistan
15th February is DARK DAY for all Kurds
Who is Abdullah Ocalan?
Millions of Kurds regard Abdullah Ocalan as their political representative. About 3.500.000 Kurds have testified this in a signature campaign in 2006. He is the most important exponent of their struggle for cultural rights and democracy and has become a symbol for the freedom of the Kurds. Ocalan opposes separatism and secessionism and stands for a democratic Middle East with all the peoples having equal rights which he has put forward as his perspective for a solution.
Tireless peace efforts
Since 1993, Ocalan has been trying to create conditions that are suitable for a peaceful solution of the conflict. Even after his illegal abduction and imprisonment twelve years ago, on 15 February 1999, he has remained a consistent advocate of a peaceful, political solution. Heeding his call, again, Kurdish guerrillas have since August 2010 maintained a unilateral ceasefire despite continued attacks by the Turkish army.
Since 1999 the inhuman isolation of Ocalan on Imrali has been subject to criticism by the Council of Europe's anti-torture committee (CPT). Ocalan was the only prisoner on the island – watched over by more than 1,000 soldiers and hidden from the outside world. Since the end of 2009, he has been one of six inmates in isolation – but Ocalan rarely meets is five new fellow prisoners so in reality the conditions remain a form of isolation. Consequently, the conditions in Imrali remain worse than in any other prison in Turkey. The government bears full responsibility for the situation on Imrali, since the prison is no longer under the control of the military.
Escalation of violence
The government pretends to implement democratic reforms but at the same time elected Kurdish mayors and hundreds of politicians are imprisoned, deputies dragged before the courts, and draconian punishments are imposed even on children. The military conducts bombings at will, even on Iraqi territory. Nothing has come out of the so called “Kurdish initiative”. The future threatens to be one of an escalation of violence encouraged by the political duplicity of the governing AKP.
Erdogan wants war, not peace
Once again, the AKP government tries to deceive the world. Instead of grasping the hand that is offered for peace and really starting to solve the Kurdish issue, Erdogan and his ministers try to provoke the Kurds and break their will. They encourage anti-kurdish pogroms, issue blank cheques for military operations and showcase this as “democratic politics”. For his part, Ocalan developed a “roadmap for peace”, which contains concrete proposals for a peace ful solution. The government has responded by trying to deprive the public of the contents of this document. It is known that the government has long been involved in “dialogue” with Ocalan, but now this has to be followed to the next logical step: serious negotiations for a political solution to the conflict.
Why are we here?
We are protesting once more against the international plot that led to the abduction of Abdullah Ocalan on 15 February 1999. We want peace and a democratic solution in Kurdistan and Turkey. We believe that Abdullah Ocalan with his ideas for a democratic autonomy in a democratic republic is the guarantor of such a solution. The inhumane isolation torture against him must be stopped; he must at last be recognized as a partner for a political solution.
● Torture and isolation must be stopped, Imrali prison must be closed down!
● Immediate start to negotiations for a political solution to the conflict!
● Dialogue, not violence: Freedom for Abdullah Ocalan – Peace in Kurdistan!