The prison isolation conditions of Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Öcalan in Imralı High Security Prison continue. Öcalan is not allowed to meet with his lawyer or with his family members.
Bursa Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office imposed a 6-month ban on lawyers visits on 23 September last year, on the grounds of the “Road Map” that was sent by Abdullah Öcalan to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in 2009. Following the ban, applications that were made by lawyers revealed that a new disciplinary “sanction” was imposed on Öcalan in January this year.
The last time Abdullah Öcalan had contact with the outside world was via a phone call on 25 March with his brother Mehmet Öcalan: it lasted for only for few minutes.
Mehmet Öcalan spoke to MA and stated: ”Our last five-minute phone call was unacceptable. We have not heard from him since then. Like every other prisoner, Öcalan’s legal and democratic rights must be recognised. We want our constitutional rights to be recognised.”
”He is not an ordinary person. He has great influence and impact throughout the Middle East. He is also a part of the ‘Kurdish question.’ Since 2015, the doors of Imralı have been closed to everyone. This is unacceptable,” he added.
Stating that the International Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) and international human rights institutions have a great responsibility, Mehmet Öcalan continued: ”Our legal rights are being violated. The main problem is the ‘Kurdish question.’ The main actor of the problem is Öcalan. If there was a solution to the Kurdish problem by killing, it would have been solved within 40 years already.”
So many people have died over the years in Turkey’s war against the Kurds, Mehmet Öcalan noted. He added: “War is not the solution. This problem can only be resolved with Öcalan on a democratic basis.”
Mehmet Öcalan draw attention to the prison hunger strike in Turkey that has reached its 190th day. ”Thousands of people went on hunger strike to end the isolation. The doors of Imralı Island must be opened to the lawyers and to us, family members, as soon as possible in order to end the hunger strikes,” he said.
“I urge everyone who has a conscience and a feeling for justice: Use your democratic rights in order for the gates of Imralı to be opened in order for the ‘Kurdish question’ to be solved and the hunger strikes to end.”