Those who think PKK will abandon arms without democracy are ‘dreamers,’ says senior member
DİYARBAKIR – Doğan News Agency
Cemil Bayık, the co-chair of the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK), argued that the Kurds needed 'defense forces' to fight against radical Islamists in Syria. DHa PhotoThose who think the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) will withdraw from armed struggle before the Kurdish people live in a “free and democratic” society are “dreamers,” a founding member of the organization has said, amid a fresh push from the government to revive the stalled peace process.
Cemil Bayık, who is also the co-chair of the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK), the PKK’s urban wing, also accused Turkey of supporting Islamist groups fighting with Kurds in Rojava, referring to the Kurdish-populated parts of northern Syria.
“Turkey has not only adopted an anti-democratic policy within the country. It also supports despots and gangs abroad. Instead of helping democratic forces in Rojava and Kobane, Turkey lends its supports to armed gangs [fighting against] the Kurds … This is why the Kurds will keep their legitimate defense force, and even look to reinforce it. Therefore, nobody should expect the PKK to lay down their arms before the Kurds live in a free and democratic society,” Bayık said in an interview with Kurdish daily Azadiya Welat on July 10.
Touching on the latest Islamic State (IS) militants’ offensive in Kobane, Bayık said Kurds in Syria had no alternative but to fight and defend themselves.
“Those who recently said the time for armed struggle has passed and the time to lay down arms has come should take a good look at the Middle East and Rojava. They have to see that without a legitimate defense force, the Kurds would drown in a spoon full of water,” he said.
His statement comes as a new and relatively more ambitious government bill is debated at Parliament.
The law would allow the government to take all of the necessary measures it needs to move the talks forward, including steps to grant amnesty to Kurdish militants who lay down arms, as well as legal immunity to officials involved in talks with the PKK.