Jailed PKK leader pens letter urging support from Armenian community

Jailed PKK leader pens letter urging support from Armenian community

Jailed PKK leader pens letter urging support from Armenian community

The PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan (L) is seen with the BDP lawmakers Pervin Buldan (R) and BDP co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş (C) at İmralı Island. DHA Photo

The jailed leader of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) has penned a letter to the Turkish-Armenian weekly Agos, calling on the Armenian community to support the demands of Kurds in Turkey.

“The Kurdish people’s fight for freedom and the cure for the Armenian people’s sorrows have overlapped in the fight to [be able to] live in this land as citizens who share the same rights,” Abdullah Öcalan said in the letter, published Jan. 30.

The letter came after the co-chair of the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK), Bese Hozat, controversially described the Armenian, Jewish and Greek lobbies as a “parallel state,” echoing Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s accusations against the movement of the U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen (Cemaat).

In the letter, Öcalan also accused anti-democratic powers “from inside and outside of” Turkey of hampering the resolution of the Kurdish issue. “Every time that we undertook peaceful paths, they have interrupted it with provocations,” Öcalan wrote. He cited “capital lobbies” and “structures such the Cemaat” as groups that sought to hamper the processes.

He also said the killing of former Agos editor Hrant Dink was perpetrated with the same logic. “The true friend of the people Hrant Dink was massacred by the representatives of this dirty mentality, to serve the purpose that I have attempted to describe above,” Öcalan wrote, urging the Armenian community to stand against such networks.

“I invite everyone to be more vigilant and consider matters more objectively against deep, open or parallel structures, and different structures as lobbies, or the Cemaat, which intend to frustrate our endeavor for the people,” he said.

In the letter, the jailed PKK leader also urged the Turkish state to reckon with its past “regarding the Armenian genocide.”

“In our time, it is necessary that the whole world recognizes the Armenian people’s tragedy, paving the way for the mourning of their sorrows. It is inevitable that the Turkish Republic will approach the matter with such maturity and reckon with this bitter history,” Öcalan said.

The letter comes amid growing uncertainty about the stalled Kurdish peace process. Öcalan had previously argued the graft probes launched on Dec. 17 were attempting to prevent the peace process launched over a year ago.