Four killed in Siirt as Iraqi Kurd leader calls for calm
DİYARBAKIR / ARBIL
Both the Turkish military and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) should silence their arms and find a solution to their problems through dialogue, according to Kurdistan Regional Government President Masoud Barzani. “Those in charge of the PKK also agree that maintaining arms is not a solution,” he said.
Stating that the period of armed struggle was over because this method today only created obstacles to a solution, Barzani said: “incidents like the Silvan and Dağlıca attacks take place and create tension, so the dialogue gets interrupted.”
Barzani met with prominent Kurdish intellectual Kemal Burkay on June 26 in the Selahaddin province of northern Iraq, and said that Burkay’s return to his country after a long period away was a sign of positive changes, according to the official website of Iraqi Kurdistan Democratic Party.
According to Denge Azad website, in the meeting that lasted for about an hour, Barzani touched upon the importance of silencing arms reciprocally for the solution of Kurdish problem.
“In the past we also took up arms for our rights and liberties and fought for years. But it was different then. Now the conditions of the country and the world have greatly changed. In today’s world, taking up arms poses obstacles to the solution, rather than serving it. Those in charge of the PKK also agree with me on that point,” said Barzani.
Prominent Kurdish political figure, lawyer and poet Kemal Burkay, who had moved away from Turkey in 1980, returned last year to lend his support to the peace process on the Kurdish issue. Eight soldiers were killed and 16 more were wounded last week during clashes between security forces and members of the PKK in the southeastern province of Hakkari’s Dağlıca district.
Masoud Barzani also called for the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) last week to cease armed conflict saying it can get nothing out of it in this age, while the Turkish government pressed Barzani to do more to end its presence in northern Iraq.
“We were saddened very much by yesterday’s attack. I condemn it. Wars and weapons no longer have a place in this age,” Barzani said.
The four soldiers were killed in the eastern province of Siirt’s Eruh district in a fight with the PKK. (For full report: Fallen soldier’s family rejects military burial)