Ömer Öcalan, MP for the People’s Democratic Party (HDP), in an exclusive Medya Haber interview criticised a remark made by Turkey’s main opposition party leader, Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, that the Kurdish question could not be resolved in cooperation with what Kılıçdaroğlu described as ‘illegitimate’ representations such as ‘İmralı’, a reference to the Kurdish leader, Abdullah Öcalan, the leader of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party imprisoned in the İmralı Island prison since Feb 1999.
Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the chair of the Republican People’s Party (CHP), recently said that the Kurdish question could only be solved with the contribution of legitimate organisations, not with what he described as ‘illegitimate’ ones like İmralı.
Ömer Öcalan, while indicating that Abdullah Öcalan was indeed seen by the Kurdish people as their representative in possible peace talks for ending an ongoing war, he also emphasised that the most pressing issue for now was being denied access to information on Öcalan’s health conditions and views.
“The people are clear about the recent discussions,” he said. “Some may be seeking other things, but the Kurdish people have always put forward their own stance, their own approach. We are faced with a reality of war. People are aware of the two sides in this war, and Öcalan is the address for them in respect of this point. There are futile attempts, and there are those who are in favour of creating artificial policies, which are obscuring some things.”
Ömer Öcalan underlined the priority of ending the severe isolation of Öcalan:
“The main problem now is that Öcalan’s views cannot find a way out of prison. We also do not know anything about his health conditions. A solution to this must be urgently found. Moreover, those who contend to govern this country in the future must be careful about what they’re saying. Words like ‘illegitimate’ trigger the reflexes of the Kurds in various ways. Such words are not appropriate. They are used carelessly… Every people has a leader, has its own political representatives. At this point, the state parties are trying to take away the political will of the Kurds.”