PKK Mem­bers Rec­og­nized As Activists, No More Ter­ror­ists

ARA News

On Tues­day, the Par­lia­men­tary Assem­bly of the Coun­cil of Europe (PACE) adopted a res­o­lu­tion to remove the Kur­dis­tan Work­ers’ Party (PKK) from the list of ter­ror­ist groups.

The res­o­lu­tion was adopted after being voted upon by the PACE mem­bers, and received the agree­ment of 150 vot­ers out of 161. Con­se­quently, the PKK rebels are rec­og­nized as ‘activists’ instead of ter­ror­ists or militants.

 

The deci­sion fol­lowed inten­sive peace nego­ti­a­tions between the Turk­ish Prime Min­is­ter, Recep Tayyip Erdo­gan, and the impris­oned leader of the PKK, Abdul­lah Ocalan, result­ing in a peace agree­ment between both sides.

Since 1984, the PKK orga­ni­za­tion holds an armed rebel­lion against the Turk­ish author­ity for the so-​called legit­i­mate polit­i­cal and cul­tural rights of the Kur­dish peo­ple in Turkey –con­sist­ing an approx­i­ma­tion of 18% of pop­u­la­tion in Turkey. More than 40.000 were killed from both sides over almost three decades of conflict.

Over years, the PKK was inter­na­tion­ally rec­og­nized as a ter­ror­ist orga­ni­za­tion. How­ever, the recent peace nego­ti­a­tions, besides Ocalan’s dec­la­ra­tion of stop­ping the organization’s mil­i­tary oper­a­tions in Turkey, seem to have played a role in chang­ing the Euro­pean descrip­tion of PKK’s mem­bers, and call them ‘activists’.

Accord­ing to the Turk­ish news­pa­per Today’s Zaman, the PACE group con­sid­ered the peace process between the Turk­ish gov­ern­ment and the Kur­dis­tan Work­ers’ Party frag­ile, adding that some fur­ther steps are needed to be taken.

“The Assem­bly is aware that the process is frag­ile and should be accom­pa­nied by the with­drawal of the PKK activists from Turkey,” Zaman quoted a state­ment issued by PACE.

The term ‘activists’ was also included in the exple­na­tory notes of the report of the Assem­bly on mon­day, tabled by the Mon­i­tor­ing ommit­tee of PACE.

Source: ARA News

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