"In the spring of 1993, on March 17, at a base in Lebanon with Talabani present, Ocalan announced a cease-fire from March 20 to April 15 and declared that the PKK did not intend "to separate immediately from Turkey."
~ Chris Kutschera.
~ Chris Kutschera.
Something interesting from TDN last Friday:
Iraqi President Jalal Talabani has said Turkish democracy offers significant opportunities to Kurds and warned that waging a war against Turkish democracy would amount to waging war against democracy and the rights of Kurdish people.
Newsflash: There is aTurkish democracy like there is South Kurdistani democracy or Iraqi democracy.
Giving excerpts from his dialogue with the imprisoned leader of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), Talabani said he once sent a letter to Abdullah Öcalan before his arrest in 1999.
"I told him (in the letter) to give up guerrilla fighting and to start a political fight by benefiting from the democratic environment in Turkey. Öcalan then accused me of betraying the Kurdish people, whereas I still believe the same thing," he said.
Öcalan attempted to begin a political dialog in the early 1990s with and when he did go to Europe to seek a political solution from the EU, every door was slammed in his face. Of course, Talabanî's role as a go-between for PKK and Turgut Özal, and adding his machinations with the Americans at the same time, is questionable in hindsight.
Talabani stressed that Turkish democracy was offering important opportunities to Kurds, referring to Kurdish deputies having seats in the Turkish Parliament.
"Kurds are sending their own deputies to Parliament," he said. "They have their own (political) parties and press and broadcasting organs. The new Constitution will grant them broader rights. Therefore, waging a war against the AKP government and the Turkish state would amount to waging war against democracy and even the rights of the Kurds."
Kurds have sent their own deputies to the TBMM before and we all know how that went so the Ankara regime is going to have to prove it has given up its inherent racism and act for the benefit of the Kurdish people, and not take Talabanî's word for it. No one should believe it until they see it.
Overlooking the fact that Kurdish-language media in Turkey is highly censored, or that Kurdish newspapers like Özgür Gündem or Azadiya Welat are routinely shut down for reporting news that the Ankara regime doesn't like. The "new constitution" was already decided in secret by AKP and the Paşas, under conditions that resemble the creation of Turkish-Islamic synthesis by Turgut Özal and the Paşas. That, in turn, led to the rapid growth of Turkish Hezbollah as a clandestine armed force of the Turkish government which was turned against the Kurdish people. Given the long history of the Ankara regime in its relationship with Kurds under its occupation, one would have to be a raving idiot, or worse, to believe that a constitution already agreed to by the regime is going to give Kurds any more rights than they already have under the Paşas' current constitution.
Talabani said Kurdish politicians should contribute to the democratic process in Turkey. "I think Kurdish political leaders including Ahmet Türk (leader of the pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party, DTP) understand this very well."
The implication of this is that DTP politicians have contributed nothing so far to the "democratic process" in Turkey, which is highly insulting to say the least.
The Kurds in Turkey are fed up with the armed struggle, said Talabani, because the war only brought migration and death.
"However, AKP policies gave them (Kurds) hope. Prime Minister Erdoğan admitted the presence of the Kurdish problem in the country and pledged a democratic solution. Kurds preferred the AKP even in Diyarbakır and sent eight AKP deputies to parliament, while the DTP sent four," he said.
He underlined that the APK has proved it is not a nationalist or racist party.
AKP has proved nothing of the kind. And let's remember what happened after Erdoğan went to Amed: Şemdinli, death threats to DTP and IHD, the state's murder of Ferhat and Fatma Akgül, continued use of chemical weapons against HPG gerîlas, the Amed Serhildan, the wanton murder of Kurdish protestors and the torture of Kurdish children, the Amed bombing, the attempts to cut DTP out of the electoral process, the attempts to disenfranchise Kurdish voters, the new OHAL (State of Emergency).
All of those things came from AKP and none of them are good. As for Kurds being fed up with armed struggle, while it may be true it is also true that politically nothing has happened without armed struggle. As a result this is a struggle that has been forced on the Kurdish people.
To fight the PKK, Talabani said, they will continue political calls and pressure the outlawed group through the media.
"It should not be forgotten that the Iraqi constitution does not allow terrorist organizations to be harbored within Iraqi territory," he said. "Therefore, the Iraqi government will do what needs to be done in line with the constitution as soon as it gets stronger but unfortunately, we cannot take armed action against the PKK and PEJAK (a wing of the PKK) at this stage. I clearly said this to Prime Minister Erdoğan in Riyadh (on the sidelines of an international meeting)."
Talabanî admits that the leadership of South Kurdistan and Iraq will engage in propaganda efforts against PKK. In other words, they're going to lie. Then he calls "terrorist" those who fight against regimes that engage in brutal repression of Kurds. By his own definition, therefore, Talabanî himself is a terrorist, as the Ankara regime claims. After all, Talabanî fought against Saddam Hussein and the Baghdad government when Saddam was an indespensible regional asset of the US and a good ally of Turkey.
Talabani said he has paid a visit to Syria and Iran since he was elected president. "But I haven't received an invitation from Turkey and I can say in advance that it would be an honor for me to come to Turkey if I am invited after the election of (Abdullah) Gül as president."
Besides, maybe Talabanî can get his Turkish diplomatic passport back in case things don't go well in Baghdad.
Not to leave Barzanî out of it:
We are certainly against the use of the Iraqi territory against neighboring countries and will not allow this, said Barzani.
"We clearly told the PKK our position. It should not be forgotten that the PKK is a problem for us too."
What are we to think of these kinds of statements? Double-speak? Political apple-polishing? Truth? In the meantime, TSK continues to bombard Kurdish civilians in South Kurdistan with cluster bombs without damaging the business interests of the Southern Kurdish leadership.