Öcalan refuses to meet relatives, minister says
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Ergin says the jailed PKK leader refuses to meet with relatives on the grounds that they spread incorrect messages. AA photoThe jailed leader of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), Abdullah Öcalan, has refused to meet with relatives on the grounds that they misinterpret what he says and spread incorrect messages, Justice Minister Sadullah Ergin said.
Öcalan’s brother Mehmet Öcalan traveled to the prison island of İmralı last week, but no meeting took place after the PKK leader said in a written statement to the prison authorities that he did not wish to see him, Ergin said in an interview on CNN Türk television.
“They may fail to understand me properly, attribute inaccurate meanings to what I say and open the door to misleading consequences,” Öcalan said in the statement, according to Ergin.
The minister said Öcalan was also refusing to meet his lawyers but did not explain why. He said, however, that the lawyers were not allowed to travel to İmrali and would be able to obtain permission only after Parliament approves legal amendments concerning Öcalan.
Under the draft, designed to curb Öcalan’s communication with the outside world, the authorities could ban lawyers from visiting convicts for up to six months if “concrete facts exist that the convict is directing the activities of a criminal organization through the people he/she meets in prison.” Parliament is expected to take up the bill this week, Ergin said.