AKP isolates PKK leader to end peace talks: İmralı delegation
Faruk Balıkçı - DİYARBAKIR
CİHAN PhotoThe ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) is isolating the imprisoned leader of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), Abdullah Öcalan, putting the peace process at grave risk, according to a delegation that recently applied to visit Öcalan.
After visiting senior Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK) officials in the Kandil Mountains of northern Iraq, members of the delegation warned in a press conference in Diyarbakır on May 19 that Öcalan was being “isolated” by the AKP.
“The AKP has put a new isolation system in progress. It has put the isolation card on the negotiation table in an attempt to halt the process. If peace is the goal, we call on the AKP to approach Öcalan. If Öcalan is the key to this process then we demand an end to this isolation,” said delegation member Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Deputy Parliamentary Group Chair İdris Baluken.
Baluken added that the KCK is “ready to take action” and call a congress to discuss laying down arms immediately if the AKP takes steps in the procress.
He accused President Recep Tayyip Edoğan of bringing the process to a halt with recent remarks in which he said “There is neither a table nor parties.”
“The state would not be part of these sorts of negotiations. There is no Kurdish conflict,” Erdoğan said.
The İmralı delegation, made up of Baluken, fellow HDP Deputy Parliamentary Group Chair Pervin Buldan, Democratic Society Congress (DTK) Co-Chair Hatip Dicle, and Ceylan Bağrıyanık, a Liberal Women Congress representative, applied several times to the Justice Ministry to meet with Öcalan, but their applications have received no reply since April 5.
The Kurdish peace process started in late 2012 to put an end to the decades-long armed conflict between the Turkish military and the PKK, which has led to tens of thousands of deaths.