Activists on vigil in front of the UN in Geneva: Peace cannot be achieved without Öcalan

Kurds holding a vigil in front of the UN headquarters in Geneva since 2021 denounced the Turkish attacks on Rojava and Iranian attacks on the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, saluting the resistance of the guerrillas and the hunger strike action of prisoners.

A vigil by the Democratic Kurdish Community in Switzerland has been taking place in front of the UN headquarters in Geneva since 25 January 2021. Every Wednesday, activists stage a protest in front of the United Nations building to demand the release of Kurdish people’s leader Abdullah Öcalan. The action is carried out as part of the 'Dem dema azadiye' [Time for Freedom] campaign and directed against the isolation of the Kurdish leader on the Turkish prison island of Imrali, the Turkish occupation attacks on Kurdistan, the massacres committed in Kurdish territories and the silence of the UN.

During today’s vigil, which began with a minute of silence paying tribute to martyrs of the Kurdistan Freedom Struggle, activists protested the invasion attacks of the occupying Turkish state against North and East Syria and launched the “100 Thousand Cards to İmralı” campaign, which was started within the scope of the "Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan, solution to the Kurdish question" campaign.

Mustafa Albunbaş from the Geneva Action Committee condemned the latest Turkish attacks against civilian settlements and infrastructure in North and East Syria and the Iranian attacks on Hewlêr (Erbil). Albunbaş emphasised that the isolation imposed on Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan in the Imrali Island Prison in Turkey underlies these attacks and that peace cannot be achieved without Öcalan. "The only condition that will pave the way for the peoples of the Middle East and ensure lasting peace is the freedom of Abdullah Öcalan," he said.

Speaking after, Tuba Yılmaz, Co-Chair of the Geneva Democratic Kurdish Community Centre (CDK-Ge), stated that the Kurdistan Freedom Guerrillas dealt the heaviest blow to fascist-genocidal policies with the revolutionary operations they carried out in the Medya Defence Zones in southern Kurdistan (northern Iraq). "These revolutionary actions, which take place in severe winter conditions and crush the fascist gangs, do not only overwhelm the occupying-genocidal Turkish state and the forces behind it, but also give a great morale and excitement to our patriotic people and friends, and consolidate the hope and belief in victory,” Yılmaz said.

Tuba Yılmaz noted that the hunger strike action launched by political prisoners in Turkey and North Kurdistan demanding the physical freedom of Abdullah Öcalan entered its 52nd day. She continued: "Both the revolutionary actions of the truth fighters and the resistance in prisons have added great strength to the global campaign for the physical freedom of Leader Öcalan and a solution to the Kurdish question. Everyone, friend and foe, has once again seen the fact that the colonialist-genocidal system is collapsing and the invincible power of the Apoist sacrificial guerrilla. We congratulate the historical achievements of all HPG and YJA Star commanders and fighters who contributed to the revolutionary operations, the resistance of the comrades in prisons, commemorate the martyrs with respect and gratitude, wish the continuation of such successful actions that create the free future step by step, and salute them with the spirit of Apoist comradeship."

After Co-Chair Tuba Yılmaz's speech, cards prepared to be sent to İmralı as part of the “100 Thousand Cards” campaign were signed.

Libyan human rights defenders who were in Geneva to follow the meetings at the UN visited the Kurdish activists and participated in the 100 Thousand Cards Campaign.

Journalist and human rights researcher Ali Alaspli, Director of Libyan Crimes Watch, and human rights defender Maksaut Attı, who works in Tunisia, spoke to ANF.

Ali Alaspli stated that he closely follows the struggle of Kurdistan and the Kurdish people and highlighted the importance of defending the freedom of Abdullah Öcalan. Alaspli stated that he would share the 100 Thousand Card Campaign with his circle.

Maksaut Attı also participated in the campaign, stating that the Kurdish people and Kurdistan must be free.