The delegation started their visit in Istanbul: Abdullah Ocalan must be released

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  • 15:23 20 February 2024
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ISTANBUL - The delegation of the “International Solution to the Kurdish Issue and Against Isolation Delegation", which made its first visit to Asrın Law Firm in Istanbul, said: We denounce Abdullah Ocalan's solitary confinement as a sheer violation of human rights and international law. It is time for the release of Abdullah Ocalan.” 
A delegation from Europe came to Istanbul against the absolute isolation imposed on PKK Leader Abdullah Ocalan, who has not been heard from for 35 months in Imralı Type F High Security Closed Prison. The "International Solution to the Kurdish Issue and Against Isolation Delegation" delegation, including parliamentarians, will make a series of visits here for two days. The first address of the delegation today was Asrın Law Firm, which defends the PKK Leader.
The delegation visited Asrın Law Firm in Beyoğlu. Lawyers Suzan Akipa, Ibrahim Bilmez, Cengiz Yürekli, Rezan Sarıca and Mazlum Dinç and Peoples' Equality and Democracy Party (DEM Party) Foreign Affairs Co-Spokesperson Ebru Günay welcomed the delegation. German Left Party Representative Konstanze Kriese, EFA President Maria Lorena Lopez De Lacalle, Swedish Left Party and Left Forum Representative Ann Jessica Theresa Karlqvist, Spanish National Assembly Senator, Eh Bildu (BASK) Josu Estarrona Elizondo, Catalonia Parliament (CUP) Deputy Montserrat Vinyets Pages , Unyielding France Party Group Senator Ségoléne Amiot, Unyielding France Party Group Advisor Clément Evans and Norwegian Red Party Deputy Hege Bae Nyholt were the names that formed the delegation.
During the visit, lawyer Ibrahim Bilmez talked about their efforts to address the lack of news from Abdullah Ocalan. Bilmez informed the delegation about the silence of international mechanisms against the Imralı isolation and absolute lack of communication, and the international efforts they made to meet with their clients.
Speaking after the visit, which was closed to the press, Bilmez said: “We informed our clients about the isolation imposed on İmralı Island and stated that this solidarity is extremely important to us. We want to pave the way for all legal initiatives to meet with Mr. Ocalan. For this reason, the delegation's visit is very important for us.”
Then, the text prepared by the delegation was read. It is emphasized in the text that the unresolved Kurdish issue continues to affect the whole of Turkey and the region: “Since the founding of the Kurdish party HEP in the 1990s and the calls by the imprisoned Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan, political forces among the kurdish people have called for an end to hostilities and sought peaceful negotiations between the Turkish government and Kurdish liberation movement. These cals have been met by continued hostility and repression by the Turkish state. This repression was seen during the last national election in Turkey, during spring of 2023, when the legal party HDP was obstructed in their efforts to participate with their candidates and to campaign freely. We, representatives of European democratic parties, together with the Council of Europe, will campaign for the fundamental rights of those in Turkey who want to exercise a political mandate in a democratic form. Opposition, democratic participation and the peaceful creation of a better life must not be restricted, persecuted or kept voices.”
The text reads: “We condemn political trials against the opposition and their political representatives, which do not guarantee fair trials or humane prison conditions. That's why, in addition to election observation, we will also accompany trials and support the public report. We will closely observe the situation in the period leading up to the local elections in Turkey on the 31th of March. We are alarmed by further attempts to imprison and intimidate candidates and elected representatives of DEM. The situation resembles the outrageous harassment of HDP, in which the former leaders have been imprisoned for six years while still awaiting their final trial, despite demands from the Human Rights Court of the European Council calling for their release.”
In the text, which emphasized that the physical freedom of the PKK Leader should be ensured, it was said: “Both the repression of legal political parties, and the isolation of Abdullah Ocalan needs to end in order to restart the process towards a peaceful and lasting political solution to the Kurdish issue. Since 2005 Abdullah Ocalan claims Democratic Confederalism. The progressist parties that we represent are convinced that ecology and feminism implemented with a bottom up approach are the driving forces for a better and fairer society for all. We denounce Abdullah Ocalan's solitary confinement as a sheer violation of human rights and international law. It is time for peace and coexistance, it is time for the release of Abdullah Ocalan. It is time for peace and coexistence in the Middle East region.
In Solidarity with Kurdistan, all the organisations here represented, will continue their efforts in mobilizing election observers for the March 31th local election, and express our support for the European Delegation organized by DEM for February 19-21th. We are happy to see that MPs of different nationalities are able to join in supporting DEMs right to participate freely in the election.”
The delegation then answered journalists' issues. The delegation will meet with representatives of non-governmental organizations and political parties throughout the day

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