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Rudaw

Turkey

Ocalan Letter Asks Barzani Support in Rojava, Peace Process

By RÛDAW 31/1/2014
Demirtas himself is an outspoken critic of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Photo: Facebook
Demirtas himself is an outspoken critic of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Photo: Facebook

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Abdullah Ocalan, the jailed leader of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, has asked Kurdistan Region President Massoud Barzani to back Kurdish autonomy in Syria and the PKK’s peace process with Ankara, the head of Turkey’s largest Kurdish party disclosed.

Selahattin Demirtas, the leader of the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) that brokered the peace deal between Ocalan and Ankara last year, said the appeals come in a letter to Barzani.

“The letter asks Barzani to support the Kurds in Syria and the peace process in Turkey,” Demirtas told MPs from his party on Thursday.

Ties between the Kurdistan Region and the pro-PKK Democratic Union Party (PYD), which has declared unilateral autonomy in Syria’s Kurdish regions (Rojava), have been strained.

The PKK and Barzani’s Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) have also been traditional rivals. The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in Erbil has rejected the declaration of autonomy by the PYD.

Leyla Zana, a Kurdish MP from the city of Diyarbakir in the Turkish parliament, was tasked with hand-delivering the message to Barzani, leading to speculation about its importance and urgency.

“The letter also asks Barzani to criticize the slow progress of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) in the peace process,” Demirtas told the MPs. “We do not see any criticism from Barzani of the AKP. The Kurds in the north (Turkish Kurdistan) expect more support from Barzani,” he said.

Despite disagreements with the PKK over the situation in Rojava, Barzani has maintained good relations with Ankara and the PKK over their peace process.

Demirtas himself is an outspoken critic of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, accusing his AKP party of insincerity about the peace deal. Turkey’s Kurds have been disappointed at the slow pace of the negotiations and accuse Ankara of dragging its feet.

“The best way out of this stalemate is to democratize Turkey,” said Demirtas. “Leaders who face such a crisis either resort to democracy or rule by force,” he added. “The best solution is Ocalan’s initiative.”

Demirtas said that a recent corruption scandal, which has intensified the rivalry between Erdogan’s government and the powerful Gulen movement, is harmful to Turkey and the peace process.

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Muraz Adzhoev | 31/1/2014
“The letter asks Barzani to support the Kurds in Syria and the peace process in Turkey" and "to criticize the slow progress of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) in the peace process,” Demirtas told the MPs. “We do not see any criticism from Barzani of the AKP. The Kurds in the north (Turkish Kurdistan) expect more support from Barzani,” he said. What kind of support in terms of practical content do they expect from Barzani "to back Kurdish autonomy in Syria and the PKK’s peace process with Ankara", if there is still no united national organ and approved "road map" of the peaceful coordinated struggle for freedom in each particular parts of Kurdistan, if PKK, BDP and PYD do not want or are not ready yet to recognize the leading organizational role of the sole kudish legitimate institution of political and executive power of the President of the South Kurdistan region. How Barzani, as the President, can back a Kurdish autonomous region in Syria that does not exist in fact and yet has not been adopted and approved legally by the majority of the Kurdish people and political parties of the West Kurdistan? Just let the President and KRG of the South Kurdistan, without any unreasonable and provocative preconditions from kurdish parties and organizations, hold the Kurdish nation's political congress to make urgently required decisions on all problematic regional and geopolitical aspects of the Kurdish issue that should be solved by the Kurdish Supreme Headquarter at the official bilateral and multilateral diplomatic and political levels of negotiations.
Kurdish Unity | 31/1/2014
I understand that politics isn't easy, especially for the Kurds in a hostile region, but I hope that the relations between the PKK en KDP are good, at least behind the curtains.
Kurdo | 31/1/2014
What öcalan says: what ever you do, do it my way. I hope Mr Barzano does not listen to Öcalan. Öcalan is nothing but a tratior. He is not to trust for one second. Kurdistan and kurdish people are more important than Öcalan.
Roni | 31/1/2014
A good relation between all Kurdish political parties and all religious and ethnical minorities living in all parts of Kurdistan is very important, also for peace, development, prosperity, security and stability. This is as well in interest of our neighbours. Roni A.
Stratus | 1/2/2014
Rudaw get your facts right Kdp rejected Rojava's autonomy declaration not KRG - all the other parties Gorran,PUK and even the Islamic parties welcomed it.
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