Öcalan is not an ordinary prisoner

Öcalan is not an ordinary prisoner

I do not understand why we can’t accept certain facts.

When Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan gave the direction that a TV set should be installed in jailed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Öcalan’s room, all hell broke loose.

How was it possible that the “baby murderer” would watch TV whenever he wanted? He was supposed to be no different to any other prisoner.

Let’s discuss the mentality of this argument.

Turkey is granting special status to Abdullah Öcalan. This is such an important status that the road to solving the country’s biggest problem passes through İmralı Island, where Öcalan is being held. Through him, the PKK is trying to be controlled.

There were riots in prisons; convicts from the PKK started hunger strikes. When the government was unable to deal with them, it knocked on İmralı’s door. He was able to solve the problem with just one message.

We are undergoing such a sensitive process that almost every step is being taken with great care. And with every step, eyes are turned to İmralı. The ideas and steps that come out of Ýmralý will influence not only Turkey, but also the “Kurdish formation” in the region.

Not only Ankara, but the millions of Kurds living in this country also give a special status to Öcalan. They regard him as a symbol, a flag of the Kurdish issue. With the slightest move, they riot. With one sign from him, they take to the streets.

Remember, despite all its statements, the “mighty” Republic of Turkey could not go through with the death sentence verdict of the court in 1999? Did it not shelve the file because it feared the millions of Kurds taking to the streets?

Important component of the solution
Öcalan is now being visited by the undersecretary of the National Intelligence Organization (MİT) and is seen as the most important component of the solution. Given that, when there is a small measure taken to ease his daily life such as a TV, all hell breaks loose.

The discussion reaches the point where it is discussed whether the TV set to be given him should be multi or single-channel; the code is reviewed to conclude that it must be single-channel. It is also decided that both the price of the TV and the power it consumes must be collected. As if to punish him further, he will only be able to watch TRT and will thus be limited to the official view only. I cannot see any logic in this approach.

If you attribute such an important role to a person and believe in the ability of his words to influence millions of people, then isn’t it to your advantage that you ease his daily life a bit?

Wouldn’t you want him to watch Roj TV so that he can be informed more, so that he can also learn other views, instead of only listening to his brother, his mother, and his lawyers? Isn’t it more correct that he be able to read any paper he wants?

Don’t misunderstand me, I am not talking about moving Öcalan to a villa. I’m drawing attention to a simple convenience in his daily life. What harm could it bring to us that his windows are not so closely shut, or that he can make longer daily walks?

No matter how loud we say, “There should be equal treatment. Whatever treatment is suitable for a murderer, the same should apply for Öcalan,” the fact is that he is not an ordinary prisoner.

Let’s not deceive ourselves.