Andrew Feinstein, a former African National Congress (ANC) MP in South Africa, has called upon the United Nations and the European Union member states to act – in the interests of human rights concerns – to end the prison isolation conditions that have been imposed on the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Öcalan in Turkey.
International supporters like Feinstein continue to call for Abdullah Öcalan’s freedom and continue to share their concerns over the nature of Abdullah Öcalan’s arrest on 15 February 1999 and his subsequent imprisonment in Turkey. The ’15 February’ date is marked as an ‘international conspiracy day’ by millions of Kurds and others, ever since Öcalan’s abduction in Kenya, subsequent arrest and imprisonment in Turkey.
Feinstein stressed that he considered Öcalan’s prison isolation conditions to be worse than the conditions Nelson Mandela faced when he was imprisoned.
Öcalan’s ‘prison conditions are worse than the conditions of Robben Island where Nelson Mandela and his supporters were kept’
“The current prison conditions are worse than the conditions of Robben Island where Nelson Mandela and his supporters were kept jailed 27 years ago. These conditions should not be accepted by international institutions”, he said. “However, the Western countries, the US and the UK support the terrible regime of Erdoğan. If Öcalan was not the leader of people, he would not be treated this way”.
The former MP appealed to international institutions to apply pressure on Turkey to set Abdullah Öcalan free and to give the Kurdish people back their rights and the regions which the Kurds had struggled over.
‘It is time that the UN and Turkey set Abdullah Öcalan free’
“It is time that the UN and Turkey set Abdullah Öcalan free. The prolonged imprisonment of Abdullah Öcalan, who is a leader of freedom, who stands shoulder by shoulder
with other leaders of freedom like Nelson Mandela, should be ended”, Feinstein stated. He added: “I call on the UN and the international institutions to comply with and act according to international laws and accept the demands of the Kurdish people and set Abdullah Öcalan free”.
Feinstein was the first South African MP to introduce a motion relating to the Holocaust and has been known to be one of the country’s most ethically committed politicians. He resigned from parliament in 2001 in protest against the ANC’s refusal to permit an unfettered investigation into a controversial multi-billion dollar arms deal.