Statements call for Ocalan’s release on the anniversary of his expulsion from Syria

CENI WOMEN’S OFFICE FOR PEACE

The Syrian war started with the expulsion of Abdullah Öcalan

His freedom is our freedom

 

On 9 October 1998 Abdullah Öcalan was expelled from Syria, due to pressure from the Turkish government. As a result of an international plot he was later kidnapped and since 1999 has been in a Turkish prison, held under the most severe conditions of solitary confinement. Nevertheless in 2007 the Turkish state started negotiations with him as the representative of the Kurdish freedom movement. However, since 5 April this year he has been cut out of the negotiating delegation and has been kept completely isolated. This treatment of a significant political prisoner holds an entire society hostage and has a detrimental influence on peace negotiations in the Middle East.

Peace negotiations with the participation of Abdullah Öcalan, as well as his freedom, are directly linked to the freedom of the people in the Middle East. Continue reading

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International Initiative reps speaks at award ceremony for Ocalan in Scotland

Reimar Heider text of speech (short version)
International Initiative “Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan – Peace in Kurdistan”
Glasgow, 20 June 2015

As much as I am happy to be here, I am very sorry to be here. I am sorry to be here, because the reason that I am here is that the person who has been granted Honorary Life Membership in the University of Strathclyde Student’s Association, Abdullah Öcalan, cannot come and thank you all in person. He has been held under strict isolation on a Turkish prison Island  for more than 16 years now.
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Strathclyde students honour Kurdish leader imprisoned for 15 years

Press Release

Leading Scottish writer James Kelman was among the speakers at a ceremony to honour imprisoned Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan held at the University of Strathclyde Students Association (USSA) in Glasgow on Saturday 20 June.

Kelman reflected on history and recalled how,

“The Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) had been a legitimate political party until the Turkish State began its operation to have the party criminalised as a terrorist organisation. In the 1990s they discredited PKK by blaming them for a massacre in an attempt to influence members of the European Parliament. This was later exposed as a fabrication of the truth, but the Turkish State succeeded in its aim, and the PKK leadership, including Abdulla Ocalan, was outlawed as a result.”  Continue reading

University of Strathclyde Students’ Association grants Honorary Life Membership to Kurdish Leader Abdullah Ocalan

June 19th 2015

Ocalan flagAbdullah Ocalan, imprisoned Kurdish leader, will be granted honorary life membership of the USSA at a ceremony on Saturday 20 June at the University of Strathclyde Students Association in Vertigo at 5pm.

Joining the students at the ceremony will be award winning prominent Scottish writer and cultural and political campaigner James Kelman and Reimer Heider, spokesperson of the International Initiative “Freedom for Ocalan-Peace in Kurdistan”.

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Rojava: A Democratic System in Progress – A Short Film by System D Media

System D media has released a short video on Rojava and the Kurdish struggle for Democratic Confederalism in the region. Featuring interviews with Kurdish activists Memed Aksoy and Zeynep Kurban, the International Initiative’s Havin Guneser, academics Dr Thomas Jeffrey Miley and Dr David Graeber and more, the film offers a useful introduction into the revolution in Rojava and its origins, as well as the role of the PKK, and the theoretical influence of Ocalan.

Many of the interview were filmed during CAMPACCs recent workshop on National Self-Determination and the Global ‘Counter-Terror’ Regime, which took place in February.

Many thanks to Solene Cravic for her work!

ECtHR rejects Ocalan’s case against Turkey

The International Initiative has released a statement regarding the European Court of Human Rights’ recent judgement on Ocalan vs. Turkey case. Read it here:

 

Öcalan vs. Turkey decision: A bad day for human rights in Europe

Statement of International Initiative on the ECtHR decision in Öcalan vs. Turkey (No. 2)

 

The European Court of Human Rights today published its chamber decision in a set of applications by Abdullah Öcalan against Turkey.

The complaints referred, among others, to the isolation conditions on Imrali Island, the aggravated life sentence with no possibility of parole, the overhearing of all consultations with his lawyers and then threat to his life posed by the poisonous substances found in his hair. In the view of Öcalan and his lawyers, these and other violations constitute violations of articles 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 13 and 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

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The Peace and Democracy Conference to meet in Brussels

Further information at InfoTurk

Declaration to the press and public:

During the historic process that we are going through, an opportunity for a lasting peace has been created that lays the foundation for a free and democratic future for all our peoples. This period marks a turning point for the future for everyone.

We believe that the achievement of an enduring democracy is a common demand of everyone. In this context, we believe that all people, regardless of their ethnic origins, religion, language, culture, history and class positions, will carry out their historic responsibilities.

The peoples living in Europe who can trace their origins to Turkey and Kurdistan are a fundamental part of this process.

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Send birthday greetings to Abdullah Ocalan!

Dear Friends,

We urge you to send greetings to Abdullah Ocalan as an expression of friendship and solidarity to mark the occasion of his birthday on 4 April 2013 at this historic moment in history for the Kurdish people.

We are sure that you will agree that Ocalan has contributed enormously to the breakthrough which has seen the Kurds declare a ceasefire and the hopes of meaningful talks leading to an ending of the conflict.

Ocalan has spent far too many of his birthdays behind bars in solitary confinement and as a gesture of solidarity for his persistence and determination to achieve a lasting peace with Turkey we hope you will send him a card to Imrali.

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Statement: Somersault alaturca – Play it again, Sam!

­International Initiative “Freedom for Abdullah Ocalan – Peace in Kurdistan!”

Press statement, 15 February 2013

 

14 years after the abduction of Abdullah Öcalan in an international operation by intelligence services, the Kurdish question in Turkey is more current than ever. Not even this act, undertaken in violation of international law, was able to change this.

At one time declared “Public enemy no 1”, today leading Turkish politicians talk about “Imrali” as the authority to negotiate with if the vexed problem is to be resolved.

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Press conference to launch new campaign to free Ocalan

The International Initiative has invited the press and public to a press conference in Brussels this Thursday, for the launch of a new international campaign, ‘Freedom for Abdullah Ocalan’. The campaign already has a list of over 1000 first signatories, and will be the latest significant international coordinated effort to put pressure on the Turkish government to finally stop isolating Ocalan from the people and negotiate a peace settlement with the only legitimate representative that can do so.

The press conference will take place on Thursday 6th September 2012 at 10.30am, in the Résidence Palace and the International Press Centre (IPC), Rue de la Loi, 155 – Bloc C, 1040 Bruxelles.

A statement by the International Initiative says:

“Already over a thousand notable people worldwide have signed an international petition with the demand: Freedom for Abdullah Ocalan and the political prisoners in Turkey. They are of the opinion that Ocalan’s freedom would mean a breakthrough in Turkey’s democratization and a peace process in Kurdistan.
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