A peace process launched by Ocalan and Ankara in March 2012 has largely lagged.
ANKARA, Turkey – Abdullah Ocalan, the jailed leader of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, warned that Turkey has until October 15 to act on peace with the Kurds, otherwise the process is dead.
Ocalan, whose comments came through his brother Mehmet, had earlier said that peace talks with Ankara would end if the Kurdish city of Kobane in Syria, across the border with Turkey, falls to the Islamic State (ISIS). There were fresh air strikes by the US-led coalition on Tuesday as the city teetered on the verge of falling.
In his latest comments from his prison cell on Turkey’s Imrali island, Ocalan told his brother on Monday that Ankara must act, or accept the end of peace talks.
"We can await a resolution till October 15, after which we can have nothing to do,” his brother quoted him as saying. “They (Turkish authorities) are talking about resolution and negotiation but there exists no such thing. This is an artificial situation; we will not be able to continue anymore."
A peace process launched by Ocalan and Ankara in March 2012 has largely lagged, with the PKK accusing Turkish authorities of dragging their feet.
Commenting on Kobane, Ocalan said: "Our people in Kobane are going to resist to the end. Resistance will be manifested everywhere and every single Kurdish-populated area where ISIS is present.”
The PKK-affiliated People’s Protection Units (YPG) have been the main protection force in Syrian Kurdistan (Rojava), joined by Turkish Kurds fighting to defend Kobane.
“No concessions will ever be made to ISIS that is an artificial organization and will also cause trouble to the states, governments and persons supporting it,” Ocalan said.
“Whichever country is supporting ISIS will itself suffer damage. We will resist the ISIS to the end. Our people have to resist," he said.
Turkey has angered its large minority Kurds be closing the border to fighters going to fight in Kobane. Ankara fears pro-PKK Kurdish citizens returning from fighting in Syria with combat skills, and has opposed any moves that would strengthen the Kurds in Syria.