Newly-formed PKK initiative to target Turkish cities, conduct political propaganda: Report
ISTANBULThe Peoples’ United Revolutionary Movement (HBDH), an umbrella organization recently formed by nine outlawed groups led by the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), has chosen senior PKK figure Duran Kalkan as its leader and outlined its aims to stage attacks and conduct political propaganda across Turkey, daily Milliyet has reported.
The report stated that nine outlawed groups including the Turkish Communist Party/Marxist-Leninist (TKP/ML), the Marxist-Leninist Communist Party (MLKP), the Revolutionary Communists Party (DKP), the Turkish Communist Labor Party/Leninist (TKEP/L), the Maoist Communist Party (MKP), the Turkish Revolutionary Communists Union (TİKB), the Revolutionary Headquarters, and the Turkish Liberation Party-Front (THKP-C) conducted their first meeting in Syria’s Latakia on Feb. 23, after recently joining forces upon a PKK invitation.
A senior figure from the PKK, Kalkan will lead the nascent organization, Milliyet claimed, citing security sources from Ankara. The organization will try to further its agenda through propaganda activities and acts of terror across the country, which it has divided into four “action regions” for organizational purposes. Actions will be planned in each region depending on ethno-religious composition and geographical properties.
The HBDH also reportedly aims to target foreign nationals across Turkey in order to attract the attention of the international media.
According to the report, the first region was made up of Turkey’s three largest cities, Istanbul, Ankara and İzmir, while the second category included southern and southeastern provinces, including Hatay, Adana, Mersin, Kahramanmaraş, Osmaniye and Kayseri.
Reports state that the HBDH will carry out propaganda in order to garner support from Alevi citizens and open “self-defense” offices in neighborhoods across second category provinces. It will also put pressure on village heads and civil servants working in schools and health services to resign or leave town.
The third region, composed of the eastern and northeastern provinces of Erzurum, Kars, Ardahan and Gümüşhane will be utilized as sheltering regions and will provide logistical support to the activities of the outlawed group.
Meanwhile, the Black Sea region and the northeastern provinces of Giresun, Ordu, Trabzon, Tokat, Tunceli and Erzincan will be targeted by “political propaganda activities,” according to Milliyet. The group has allegedly decided to provide various forms of “assistance” to potentially sympathetic high school students, university students and civil servants.
The HBDH also aims to target foreign nationals across Turkey in order to attract the attention of international media.
Nation-wide decisions were also taken during the meeting in Latakia, including relating to the ongoing military operations against the PKK in Turkey’s southeast amid weeks-long curfews in some towns. The group has reportedly agreed to a renewed push to “hold the state responsible” for any increase in civilian casualties as clashes continue.