Rally in Marseille demands “Freedom for Öcalan”

Kurds and their friends staged a “Great Freedom Rally” promoted by the Democratic Kurdish Community Center (DTKM) in Marseille.

Kurds and their friends staged a “Great Freedom Rally” to demand freedom for Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan who has been held in aggravated isolation in the Turkish Island Prison of Imrali in the Sea of Marmara for over two years.

The rally promoted by the Democratic Kurdish Community Center (DTKM) in Marseille was joined by thousands of people who gathered at Canebiere Square at 1 pm and marched to the European Parliament’s Representation Office.

The rally here began with a minute of silence and a five-minute sit-in action. A speaker representing the DTKM in Marseille saluted the worldwide demonstrations for Öcalan’s freedom and highlighted the importance of uniting around Öcalan in the current process of historic importance.

Speaking after, KONGRA GEL Co-Chair Remzi Kartal spoke about the historical background of the international conspiracy against Öcalan, and the relentless struggle waged to defeat it through the resistance of the Kurdish people and the will of the Kurdish leader.

Expressing concern over the life and safety of Öcalan who has been subjected to an aggravated isolation regime for more than two years, Kartal said that the Kurdish leader is targeted by the Turkish state’s genocidal and brutal campaign against the Kurds.

Kartal continued: “The isolation imposed on Öcalan is associated with the Turkish state’s policies against the Kurdish people, which are implemented in four parts of Kurdistan. They seek to crush this will in connection with the freedom movement and perpetrate a savage massacre to this end. All the democratically elected representatives of the Kurds have been imprisoned and attempts are being made to create barriers in the current developments which progress in favor of the Kurds in Rojava and the Middle East. Turkey seeks to eliminate the positive image of the Kurds and their freedom movement. In parallel, it aggravates the isolation imposed on Öcalan because it is afraid of his ideas. Whatever the circumstances, Öcalan develops projects and plans in accordance with the conditions of the time. Sometimes, even a single word of his makes a great difference in the process.”

Kartal stressed that Öcalan is not just an ordinary prisoner, for which reason the Turkish state does not implement its own laws when it comes to him. According to Kartal, the Turkish state subjects Öcalan to isolation as a form of a psychological war against the Kurdish people.

Remarking that struggle is the only option to break through the isolation of Öcalan, Kartal stated: “Öcalan’s freedom depends on resistance. An enhanced resistance and struggle by our people would force them to sit at the table with Öcalan. This will be seen clearly once our people send away the fascist chief Erdoğan and double the votes of the Green Left Party (YSP) on May 14. For this very reason, our people should know that this election will not be an ordinary one. They should treat the process with the spirit of our leader and work for the Green Left Party in every street and in every house.”

The KONGRA-GEL Co-Chair concluded: “Every circle doing politics in Turkey should see the reality of the democratic forces. On this basis, we are the force that will change the social mindset and the state system. We will be engaged in a struggle for change and transformation. We must be prepared for this. The need for this change includes the necessity to open the Gates of Imrali. The state cannot pursue its anti-Kurdish policies anymore. It is faced with a deadlock. The state does not have the chance to keep itself in power through the policies of the past. As the Green Left, we have the power to change the course of events. Our people should embrace and stand with the Green Left Party and work for it with all their might.”