TJK-E calls for participation in demonstration demanding freedom of Öcalan in Cologne

The Kurdish Women's Movement in Europe is calling for participation in a major demonstration for the freedom of Abdullah Öcalan on 17 February in Cologne.

On 17 February a Europe-wide demonstration for the freedom of Abdullah Öcalan will take place in Cologne. The action represents a culmination of the campaign for a political solution to the Kurdish question. The Kurdish Women's Movement in Europe (TJK-E) called for broad participation in the demonstration.

We demand accountability

The demonstration is timed to coincide with 15 February, the 25th anniversary of the abduction of Kurdish representative Abdullah Öcalan to the prison island of Imrali. The TJK-E stated in its call: "We condemn the states involved in this plot, especially Turkey. The Turkish state is the enemy of humanity and especially women. We reaffirm that we will make 2024 the Year of Freedom of Rêber Apo [Abdullah Öcalan]."

Freedom for Rêber Apo

The TJK-E said that the isolation regime on the prison island of Imrali has been going on for 25 years. There has been no sign of life from Öcalan and his three fellow prisoners for almost three years. Öcalan had shown historic resistance in the face of this "system of torture and isolation set up by the US, England, the EU and fascist Turkey."

Rhe TJK-E added: "It was Rêber Apo who brought us women and peoples together with the paradigm of an alternative life, who taught us to stand up, to build a new life, to resist on the basis of self-defense, to think freely, to live freely and freely and creatively to fight against despair and destruction, against pain, doubt, pessimism and capitulation that capitalism imposes on us."

The statement continued: "For 25 years, Kurdish women, the Kurdish people and their friends have been standing up and organizing countless actions to destroy the Imralı system and assert the freedom of Rêber Apo. We call on all responsible states and institutions to fulfil their obligations to ensure the health, safety and ultimately freedom of Rêber Apo."

The prisons and the mothers lead the resistance

The statement said: "The Kurdish women, young people and the friends of our people unite under the paradigm of Rêber Apo and organize long marches, readings, conferences, send cards to Imrali and carry out hunger strikes. Kurdish women everywhere have taken action under the slogan 'Rêber Apo's freedom is also our freedom'. They are determined to free Rêber Apo."

We are determined to make the campaign a success

The TJK-E particularly referred to the role of women in the fight against the conspiracy and said: "The Kurdish women played a decisive role in the fight against the conspiracy leading to the abduction of the Kurdish people’s leader. As Kurdish women, we have taken a leading role in the entire resistance based on the apoist paradigm of a democratic, ecological and women's liberated society. We have accepted our responsibility in building democratic confederalism and have transformed ourselves into a self-defense force to protect our society, its freedom and the country."

As to the demonstration, the TJK-E stated: "The isolation and torture system against Abdullah Öcalan is entering its 26th year. The climax of our actions as part of the offensive 'Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan and a political solution in Kurdistan', which we began with the aim of ending Rêber Apo's 25-year captivity, will be the demonstration on 17 February in Cologne. That day the voice of millions should reach Imrali."