German court jails high-ranking PKK figure for three years
DÜSSELDORF, GermanyA court in Germany has sentenced a 53-year-old Turkish citizen to three years in jail on charges of “membership of a foreign terror organization” after ruling that he carried out outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) activities in eight different German cities for over a year.
The Düsseldorf High Court convicted the high-ranking PKK operative, identified only as Ahmet C., over propaganda and membership coordination activities carried out on behalf on the illegal organization in Duisburg, Bonn, Köln, Bielefeld, Essen, Bochum, Dortmund and Düsseldorf from June 2013 to July 2014.
In its ruling the court said the convict’s high-ranking position within the organization, his former conviction as a PKK regional representative, and the fact that the PKK poses a threat to people in Turkey, also played a role in his conviction.
The court, however, ruled for a commutation of the sentence, taking into consideration the fact that Ahmet Ç. carried out the activities while the PKK was in a ceasefire with the Turkish government during a now collapsed peace process. It also noted that the convict himself, as well as his family, was directly affected by the clashes between the two sides.