our interviews

january 24, 2024

First of all, let’s have a look at the situation and the resistance of the leader of the Kurdish people, Abdullah Öcalan. In regard of the upcoming 25th anniversary of the international conspiracy of Ferbruary 15, what can you tell us about his situation, the latest legal efforts and in general the development of the global campaign for his physical freedom? Also, how do you analyze the interrelation between the situation inside Turkey and the policies being practiced on the prison island of Imrali?

I would like to respectfully salute to Rêber Apo [Abdullah Öcalan] and his historic Imrali resistance. There is no change in the pressure, torture and isolation practices on Imrali. It is necessary to underline this every time. We should not refrain from expressing this fact just because we say it a lot. What is new is the development regarding the resistance. The global campaign aiming for the physical freedom of Rêber Apo and the solution of the Kurdish question is developing with new activities in Kurdistan and all over the world. It is as if a process is being completed. Since October 10, there have been many developments in this regard. There are statements evaluating that the first phase of the campaign has been completed and that new mobilizations will be on the agenda. There have been preparations that will probably be implemented in February, on the occasion of the anniversary of the international conspiracy. We will see.

The actions on the street by the youth, women and generally by the peoples continue. There are demonstrations and rallies everywhere. Also there are statements of institutions,groups and movements demanding the physical freedom of Rêber Apo everywhere. In addition to this, there are now also statements by various prominent people, for example, by members of the European Parliament. Leftist and socialist forces, academics from all over the world are making statements. There are even statements on behalf of labor unions, artists. What I want to point out is, that there are statements from all walks of life. The physical freedom of Rêber Apo is demanded. There are also press releases from lawyers and the Asrin Law Office [the one being responsible for the case of Abdullah Öcalan and the others imprisoned on Imrali island] announced its balance sheet for 2023. They announced that they have submitted 110 applications to go to Imrali. In other words, they applied twice a week, also there were 59 applications by the family. That’s a total of 169 applications and none of them yielded any results.

Some were rejected, others were spared any form of response. This is the situation. This is the approach to the law of those who run the system of torture, isolation and genocide on Imrali. This is their attitude and stance towards the implementation of legal rights such as lawyer visits and family visits. This is once again being revealed and seen in a very concrete way. Recently, various legal institutions have announced that they will apply to the Turkish Ministry of Justice and take various initiatives in order to be able to go to Imrali and to break this isolation system. So there is movement on that front as well.

There have been evaluations and statements by the lawyers of Rêber Apo regarding the isolation. It must have been 10 days ago, which is important for Turkey. 564 intellectuals called for a ‘Voice of Peace’ in Istanbul and Amed [Turkish name Diyarbakir]. Their demands were clear, concrete. They want Turkey to be democratized. They clearly stated that the way to achieve this was through the physical freedom of Rêber Apo, through negotiations with him. Those who think a little bit about Turkey, those who love the country, and try to understand the process, see what is happening and what is being done. They see what kind of a catastrophe this is developing and realizing step by step for Turkey. On this basis, they propose solutions with great effort and passion. They are also anxious about the future. Because they have eyes, ears and brains that can see the dangers this course entails. They understand and see that the Tayyip Erdoğan administration has brought Turkey to the brink. To put it mildly, it is not clear whether it has rolled off the cliff or whether it is still standing. He has brought it face to face with disaster. Everyone sees, evaluates, understands and discusses this more now.

The AKP stooge press discusses it the most. To brainwash people, to divert the agenda. They do it so that people don’t see the truth, don’t think, to mislead them. It is as if they have all become philosophers. Some are strategists, some are ideologists, some are theoreticians, some are commanders, warriors. They draw strategies and determine tactics. They lie that they have seen places they have never seen. Then they make a lot of pontifications, all for brainwashing. To make people in Turkey unable to think and understand.

Why? So that this disaster cannot be seen. So that the abyss that this government, Tayyip Erdoğan’s administration, has brought Turkey to cannot be seen. The world has excluded Turkey from its system. The power that says it is the center of the system, the power on which the system has been sitting for 100 years, the power that says it is the bridge between Europe and Asia, now it is not even a bridge but a road. It has made it like this. This is the result of its Kurdish enmity, its Kurdish policy, its Kurdish policy of genocide. It is the result of the war it wages in Kurdistan, because of the invasion attacks against Western and Southern Kurdistan. Obviously, where there is war, there is no capital. Capital also seeks and wants stability. Because its god is maximum profit. Maximum profit is the heaven of everything for it. Everything depends on it. And in order to make a profit, of course stability is necessary, a comfortable environment is necessary. Now Tayyip Erdoğan making statements like: “do you know the price of a bullet”, “I am developing the domestic and national industry, the war industry”, “our ancestors always fought, they never got off horseback”, and “the hill of martyrs should not remain empty”. By organizing gangs and launching attacks against the Kurdish people in Northern Kurdistan [South-East Turkey], South Kurdistan [North Iraq] and Rojava [North Syria], he has reduced this area, the historical Silk Road, the crossroads of trade routes from east to west and north to south, to a non-trade area. Everyone sees this. They now know what this means for Turkey’s future. The era of the system and status quo established a century ago is over. There were people who were saying that the centennial of Lausanne was over, that we were entering the hundred and first year. The hundred and first year seems to be the year when the system that emerged with Lausanne is coming to an end. Because now it has lost all of what it called its historical and strategic position. There is neither the Union of Soviets to act as the gendarme of Europe, nor does anyone trust it. They don’t assign him the role of the Middle East’s gendarme. Because he cannot fulfill that role. The system has created new paths for itself, new places. It created new projects in the Middle East. Tayyip Erdoğan, who once said he was the co-chair of the Greater Middle East Project, is now excluded from the Middle East. He is a president who has excluded his state from the Middle East. What will this society do with such a president? He has left no place for Turkey. Turkey will now be in a position outside of capitalist modernity. If there is to be a future, it will either become a slave to the system, or it will become an area that is exploited and oppressed by the system. It has no other value left. Now everyone sees and evaluates these things.

Those who love Turkey, those who think democratically, those who have a passion for a free life want to get rid of this disaster, they are looking for salvation. They see that the way to this is through the physical freedom of Rêber Apo, through opposing the Imrali system of torture, isolation and genocide, through the freedom of the Kurds, and that the Kurdish question must be solved through the freedom of the Kurds on the basis of the democratization of Turkey.

Such a consciousness is developing to a certain extent in Turkey. Partially, but there is such oppression and persecution that no one can say it. Here 564 intellectuals have made a brave declaration. If it continues in this manner, perhaps it can break this silence.

This ongoing disaster is not limited to Turkey, it has a negative impact on the free and democratic life of all the peoples of the Middle East, it has a negative impact on the free existence of humanity. Therefore, everyone is disturbed by this. Against this, wherever Rêber Apo’s ideas reach, people see and understand the reality better. Therefore, what we define as the global campaign for freedom, which aims for the physical freedom of Rêber Apo and the solution of the Kurdish question, continues to develop and spread. From Rojava to North Kurdistan, the society is constantly on its feet. So are the youth, women and our society abroad.

What to do? Of course we need to make this campaign even bigger. It is necessary to spread it further. Rêber Apo once said, “Wherever my prison writings are, there am I.” So we need to carry his prison writings everywhere, to the four corners of the world, into the hands of everyone. It is necessary to carry out such a work. The campaign is essentially such a campaign. It is a campaign to gain consciousness of freedom and to take action for freedom. This will develop.

We entered 2024 with such a campaign as a movement, as a people, as humanity. With an ambitious campaign, we want to achieve results, victory and success in 2024. We aim to completely dismantle the Imrali system of torture, isolation and genocide, and the following processes will continue with moves that will lead to such developments. Especially the 26th year of the struggle against the international conspiracy will also be the year of victory for the freedom campaign.

When we talk about the Imrali system of torture and isolation, and about the struggle against it, when we express the reality of Rêber Apo, we need to look at this quarter-century-long Imrali process. The Imrali system is not an ordinary system. When it is written about is called ‘prison’, but it is nothing like that. It is not an ordinary hostage area either. It is the center of managing the Kurdish genocide. Imrali is where the genocide against Kurds is being shaped and directed. The biggest genocidal attack takes place on Imrali. The Imrali system is such a genocidal system and this is what is being applied to the whole Kurdish society. The system of governance that imposes genocide on the Kurds is also the system that governs Turkey.

This world was shaped on the mentality and politics of the Turkish Republic, which ignores the existence of the Kurdish identity and wants to destroy the Kurdish people. This is how this century-long global capitalist hegemony was formed. Global capitalism and its hegemonic structure is definitely based on this. Therefore, Imrali concerns everyone, all of humanity. The Imrali system of torture, isolation and genocide harms everyone living in this world. Accordingly everyone benefits from the freedom struggle against this system. It is everyone’s struggle. We need to see and understand it like this. This is connected to the Kurdish genocide. The genocidal mentality and politics have been going on for a quarter of a century as the Imrali system of torture, isolation and genocide. The international conspiracy was an annihilating attack of this system. On October 9, 1998, they started this attack and on February 15, 1999, they turned the attack into the Imrali system.

The Kurdish genocide continues as the Imrali system of torture, isolation and genocide continues. It has been ruled by this system for a quarter of a century. It is important to see and understand this correctly. We need to see that this is a global attack. And it is necessary to see that this attack has been planned and executed as an international conspiracy for the last quarter of a century.

The February 15 conspiracy represents an all-out attack to carry out the Kurdish genocide. An attack of annihilation. The attack on the person of Rêber Apo is such an attack. It was an attack aimed at the destruction of Rêber Apo. On the basis, it was aimed to liquidate the PKK, and on the basis, it was aimed to bring the Kurdish genocide to a conclusion. On October 9, 1998, this was tried to be done in one day. When they failed, they brought the execution to the agenda as the February 15 conspiracy. It did not work. They brought the Imrali attack to the agenda. On the basis of this system, they have been continuing this attack with various plans for 25 years on the basis of what they call the ‘hostage and rotting policy’. Under the leadership of Rêber Apo, the Kurdish people and its international friends have been resisting this brutal attack. An attack that is an enemy of humanity, for 25 years. Now, with the upcoming of February 15, the 25th year is coming to an end. 25 years, a quarter of a century. That’s easy to say. Such a brutal attack is being carried out.

Those who built Imrali said “you die here 10 times a day”. When the issue of execution came up, they said “execution kills once, but on Imrali, there are ten deaths every day”. Rêber Apo answered to this, “There is no death here, there is killing.” He said, “This is the area where an extermination attack is being carried out.” For 25 years such an extermination attack has been carried out and Rêber Apo has been resisting it. What kind of resistance is this? What is the will, what is the belief, what is the consciousness, what is the claim, what is the resistance? We need to understand this well.

We have deficiencies in understanding the conspiracy, in understanding the Imrali system. We have weaknesses in developing correct, effective and successful methods of struggle against it. If a period of 25 years has passed, if so much time has been prolonged, it is due to this. But let us not forget, the international conspiratorial forces wanted to get results in a day. They failed. A day became a month, a year became twenty-five years. They attacked every day, every moment. All of these attacks were broken and frustrated. It is clearly seen in this way that the international conspiracy has been riddled with holes, how weak the conspiratorial attacks have been rendered and how they have been frustrated. But still the Imrali system continues. The conspiratorial attacks continue. The resistance against the conspiracy also continues on this basis. So the process is not over. Therefore, it is neither necessary to say that the conspiracy has not weakened, that the struggle against the conspiracy has not yielded results, has not developed or created gains, nor is it necessary to say that everything is already over, that it has come to an end. Not in both cases. The attacks continue to exist, and they still want to succeed. The resistance against it has repeatedly frustrated it, but the struggle still continues. The genocidal attacks against the Kurds continue.

This 25th anniversary is an important anniversary. On the 25th anniversary, the physical freedom of Rêber Apo had to be put on the agenda in legal terms. The ‘European Court of Human Rights’ (ECHR) and similar institutions have taken decisions in this direction. They were not implemented, the politics does not implement them. This is why these fabricated disciplinary penalties are given. They don’t even implement their own laws. Turkey does not. Europe also does not impose any sanctions on Turkey. So they are accomplices. They all continue this partnership.

Let the conspiratorial forces know this. Everything is open and public. Everyone knows what is going on. Therefore, it should not be assumed that no one understands. The world’s greatest injustice was committed against the Kurdish people on the basis of the attack on Rêber Apo. The US took part in it, as well as Britain, Israel and the European states did. From France to Germany, the states participated in it. Everyone knows who organized, developed and carried out this conspiracy.

They did this for some interests and gains. Now the crow they fed is scratching its own eye out. How far will this situation go, this injustice and lawlessness? They need a little conscience. They need to turn around and see the injustice and insult they have done against the Kurdish people and come to their senses. They should have some conscience. They need to end this situation, this process. They need to apologize to the Kurdish people. Otherwise, a process with heavy consequences for them will deepen. Everyone sees this.

And let me say this for our people and our international friends. It was a difficult process, the most difficult process in human history. Already before this latest genocidal attack, they crushed the Kurdish resistance with brutality, massacres and genocide. In [the north Kurdish regions of] Dersim [Turkish name Tunceli], Amed, Ararat, [the east Kurdish region of] Mahabad and Southern Kurdistan. This is all known to the public. We know how execution tables were set up, how revolutionary leaders were executed. We may not have achieved freedom, but we prevented extermination, we prevented execution. In the system of torture and isolation on Imrali, Rêber Apo has turned himself into the leader of all the oppressed and oppressed humanity. He is now showing the way to liberation. The Kurdish leadership has become the leadership of humanity, the leadership of peoples. With such a struggle. This is the greatest development in history. At the beginning, no one believed this would happen. They said it would be impossible. Because even in normal prisons resistance seem impossible to them. Looking at themselves, nothing could happen on Imrali. But Rêber Apo did what they said could not be done and achieved what they said could not be achieved.

We gave strength and support to this resistance as a movement and as a people. Such a great resistance took place on the basis of walking in the footsteps of Rêber Apo, following him and supporting him. It should be known that we have carried out the greatest resistance in history. As the movement and the people, we have carried out the most meaningful resistance in these 25 years. We carried out the resistance that achieved the greatest gains and developments. Nothing was wasted. The results of this will be more evident from now on. As Rêber Apo said himself, “All this is a preparation. Great results are about to come!” Now we are in the process of developing struggles that will bring about these great results.

In the 26th year, it is necessary to resist against the conspiracy in a bigger way, resist more widely and resist more effectively. We are entering it with our action and resistance campaign aiming for the physical freedom of Rêber Apo. In this 26th year, we must enlarge it, make it bigger and carry it to victory. Such a process will begin in February. Calls have already been published. On February 17th, it is said that millions will march in [the German city] Cologne. Kurdish women, intellectuals, Kurds living in Europe, Kurdish politicians are making calls. These are very important and meaningful. Of course, it will not only be in Europe; it will also be in North and South Kurdistan, as well as Rojava; in other words, in the four parts of Kurdistan and wherever there are Kurds. We will greet the 25th anniversary of February 15 with much more effective and widespread demonstrations in every field. We will turn the conspiracy, the ‘Kurdish genocide day’, the ‘black day of the Kurds’ into light by protesting with the most widespread and effective actions. This is how we should approach it and we should start such an activism now.

We are coming to February. From the beginning of February, we must struggle by saying that such a process of action has begun. We must stand up, we must take action. We must take our move to a new level and advance towards victory in the coming months.

In the last few weeks, there have been very successful actions by the guerrilla forces that have dealt heavy blows to the Turkish army and have been widely discussed in the media. What can you tell us about this? What has changed? Will this continue? And how does the war affect the other players in the region?

On behalf of the leadership of the PKK, I congratulate to the commanders and fighters of the ‘People’s Defence Forces’ (HPG) and ‘Free Women’s Units’ (YJA-Star) who carried out the revolutionary operation in the name of the martyr Helmet Dêrelûk. This operation has crushed the fascist hordes of the AKP-MHP on the Amediyê mountain in the region of Zap. I salute their historic resistance, their historic resistance that dealt a fatal blow to fascism, their historic resistance, the whole war waged in Zap. I, also, respectfully, gratefully and by expressing my love, commemorate all our heroic martyrs who were martyred by fighting against the colonization of the Medya Defense Zones and all over Kurdistan, by commemorating the comrades Serxwebûn and Rizgar, the heroic martyrs who gave their lives in this operation.

The guerrilla has always resisted and is resisting. But the past months is a periods of significant changes in the war. Even the Turkish rulers had to admit this. “We have switched from defense to offense,” is what they said. Once again they also praised their techniques a lot. ‘We have such and such a technique, such and such a national technique,’ they would boast. One of their techniques crashed. The friends who examined it say that it is in four pieces, each piece is produced by a different country. None of them are made in Turkey. That’s how domestic and national they are. Turkish society, public opinion is being deceived. And they therefore use the technique like a stick. They got it from NATO, and from everywhere else. They gave them all the means of Turkey and used them like a stick. We told them this: This is not only in your hands, someone else can learn it and use it against you. Now Kurdish youth have learned and they are using it. It is obvious what they have become. We have always warned them, we said that they could be defeated, that they were acting dangerously. They did not listen to the warnings of our ‘Central People’s Defense Command’ (NPG). Now they are experiencing this. In the middle of winter, they scattered and threw those fascist hordes that they had paid for on the tops of the mountains. Now they can’t protect them, they can’t even pull them back. Then, of course, when they are shot, they act surprised, and say that traitors came and shot them, how did they come and shoot them? Which traitor are you talking about? Why did you go there in the first place? This is the situation.

The war has changed. The guerrilla has been talking about change, renewal and restructuring for a long time. This process shows that these things have come to practice. The guerrilla is revealing a new style of warfare. In Zap, like also in all Medya Defense Zones, our headquarters called it tunnel and team coordinated warfare. All the ways, methods and techniques of this have been learned. Now it is being practiced this winter, as it has been tested in previous winters.

And they are going to continue this process, this is just the beginning. The guerrillas have renewed themselves, developed a new style of warfare. They have developed a new system to defend themselves and are now in the mode of tactical offensive. They have moved from defense to attack. There is a new situation and the latest actions show that.

In fact, also the actions carried out throughout the summer have developed step by step. The three revolutionary operations conducted in late November, late December and mid-January crushed the fascist AKP-MHP hordes. Of course, this will continue, and we will see what will happen. Initiative is completely in the hands of the guerrillas; they have seized initiative. They have carried out and will carry out these overwhelming revolutionary operations. There is no other way.

It was not us who caused this situation, neither was it the guerrillas. Those who attacked the guerrillas are responsible. Now the aggressors are struggling and crying. Some of them are trying to bully their way around this defeat, some of them are claiming to be theorists and masterminds of war, even though they have never seen war in their lives. They blame others and they are trying to cover up their defeat.

Since 12 January, the AKP-MHP fascist administration, all its ministers, everyone including the press, have been shocked. The question is how they want to change and manipulate the given situation. They will deflect the agenda and will try to deceive the society of Turkey. That is what they are after. However, the facts are too clear to be covered up.

We have revealed the identities of those who fought there; none of them are soldiers, in fact they are all fascist MHP gangs hired with money and specially organized for the massacre of Kurds. That is why Devlet Bahçeli is so influential in the administration, even though he has never been in government. They are all mercenaries. All of them are specially trained for the genocide of Kurds, for massacring Kurds. This has been revealed, it is clearly seen that this is the case.

Now there are some people making new evaluations; discussing why this happened. There are others who have come to their senses and are questioning. There were mothers and families who wanted to dissent, but the government silenced them accusing them of being traitors. The government wants to prolong its existance through the blood of others. We are talking about collapse and destruction. They are trying to prevent collapse and destruction in this way.

I can state the following. The course of the war has now changed. The policies followed by the Turkish state, this AKP-MHP administration, can no longer withstand the guerrilla. On the contrary, the process of the guerrilla crushing them has begun. The guerrilla has taken the initiative. They are now running from success to success; and they will continue to do so.

This is a new situation, a new process and it will impact all regional developments. It will have an impact on politics, social life, everywhere. Everyone should know this. Therefore, they should approach the results of these actions and the war in this way. No one should fall into deceit. The aggressors are now listing the snow, blizzard and fog as excuses for defeat. There may be a blizzard, but it affects everyone the same. Does the guerrilla not experience snow, winter? Why can they carry out such actions under such conditions? This is the truth; the rest are all excuses.

The guerrillas now fight day and night, summer and winter. They fight in the mountains, the plains, and they fight in the cities to some extent. When the guerrilla makes urban warfare more effective in the plains, a great victory will emerge. Now the guerrilla are straining the enemy but only then will victory emerge.

There has been such a change, transformation and development in the guerrilla. Recent actions have shown this, not once, not twice; this is a continuation. It is not a coincidence; it expresses a way of organization and a style. The guerrillas continue to execute the war by organizing themselves in teams and squads via the tunnels trusting their preparations, especially in the geographies in question.

The government threatens to hit other places, claiming to break and attack. The Turkish army has no power to occupy. On the contrary, insistence on occupation will cause it great defeats. The guerrilla will strike crushing blows against the invasion attacks from now on, inflict greater defeats, and win greater military victories against the invaders.

Turkish society and intellectuals should evaluate and discuss. What are they doing there? What are they doing in [the south Kurdish areas of] Zap, Avaşîn, and Metîna, outside the borders of the Turkish Republic? They have spared neither the Syrian border nor the Iraqi border. They are attacking everywhere. It is as if they were going to occupy the world. If you use power in this way, you will be confronted with counter-struggle. If they want to attack, they will have to accept and face revolutionary counter-attacks, there is no other way.

The guerrilla actions have shaken the system, shocked it completely. That shock is still being felt. They were trying to hide it from the Turkish society, and they are still trying to hide it. They still have not admitted their losses because they know that if the results were published Turkey would face riots and internal outrage. People are questioning how those people died, why they have been in this snow and how many of them are left. What the government announces is only a fraction of the truth. If 60 people were shot, they only admit to 6 people, a tenth. And this is not just about the deaths, someone should go and investigate those conditions. What are these soldiers doing in such harsh conditions? Some people compare it to Enver Pasha’s Sarikamiş attack in 1915. They are similar. Soldiers were driven into unforgiving snow without any pity almost a hundred thousand died.

The truth is still being hidden from the Turkish society. The government doesn’t disclose the death toll. Those being sent to die are mercenaries; these people have already accepted when they signed up that the government holds the right to not disclose their death. This is a clause in their contracts.

Some families are refusing, stating that had accepted the conditions of the mercenary contracts, but that this is too much. They wanted to expose the situation, but they were immediately silenced. That’s why they don’t speak out, they don’t explain the situation they are put in, hiding it from the society in Turkey. And then they make up all sorts of excuses. This is the real situation.

Isn’t it strange? They claim that the Kurds wouldn’t be able to carry out such an offensive. They claim that the guerrilla couldn’t do this much without aid. Now they are instigating whether America, Iran, Israel or maybe all of them are behind the PKK. They are conspiring research to this matter. Why? Because the guerrillas have launched a counter that is crushing them. They assume that Kurds couldn’t do this alone, that surely someone else, other states, are behind it. Some allege that the US is organizing these attacks from Northern and Eastern Syria, bringing fighters or weapons from there.

Some parties are complaining that their soldiers on the hill of Amediyê are being shot by people coming from Rojava. What has Amediyê hill got to do with Rojava? Who is coming from where and how? Have you ever seen that geography? Think of the many military lines which have been drawn, you couldn’t even move properly. They are just pontificating, knowing that no one would hold them accountable. As if no one knows the reality of the situation, they instigate and theorize as absurdly as they wish.

You know what lies beneath this? A racist, nationalist, chauvinist spirit and mentality. The American can do it, the Jew can do it, the Iranian can do it, but not the Kurd. There is a mentality and politics that despises the Kurd so much. This is the racist, chauvinist, nationalist, self-aggrandizing, diseased mentality that despises the Kurd, which has been embedded in the psyche and consciousness of Turkish people, women and youth for the last 20 years with the AKP-MHP. There is such a sickening mentality.

Alas, they can no longer deny that they have been hit. The spear does not fit in the sack, they couldn’t hide it. They announce records of 5-6 deaths, but they say that the Kurds could not do it, that others are behind these killings.

They could keep probing; they won’t find anything. The Kurds are doing it. Even if you denied it 40 times, the Kurds are executing this counter. You will always suffer the crushing blows of the freedom seeking Kurds because you deserve it. Unless this poisonous racist, chauvinist, nationalist state of mind is broken in the brain and heart, no humanity can emerge from that sort of Turkishness, no democracy can develop. This needs to be understood as it is. This is a very sick situation; seeing the other person so small, so backward, so little while seeing yourself as the superior race. They used to say that the Kurd could only be a servant. In 1944, the so-called minister of that time said this. They are all fascists; racist, nationalist, chauvinist fascists.

Why do they maintain such a heavy isolation on Imrali, why do they prevent even a word of Rêber Apo from coming out? They have always claimed from the beginning that it is not the Kurds doing this, that Apo is not doing this, that so and so state is behind everything. There has been a conspiracy, for 25 years on Imrali, but still Rêber Apo has managed to draw the line of liberation of the peoples of the world, the oppressed and women.

Now they say: “The power lies with Öcalan. Let’s put a cloak over him so that not a word of his comes out.” They now recognize the greatness of our leadership. This isolation is the confession of Rêber Apo’s greatness, the confession of Rêber Apo’s power. It is a confession of his creativity, a confession of his success. Otherwise, why else would they not even apply their own laws, why else would they not allow a word of his to be disclosed? They know that he has great power. They know that he will create development, that this will harm them. They see his great power and are trying to prevent it. Why? They think that only Rêber Apo could do what he has done, that without him the others cannot. They say, “Therefore, if we silence Öcalan, if we cut his voice, we will make the others fail.” They have accepted Rêber Apo as such. They bowed before his greatness and power. They have submitted to this confession.

They still maintain that racist, chauvinist, hating state of mind and understanding that despises Kurds. He has made himself a power, a leadership, recognized by women, youth and all oppressed humanity. Kurdish women, youth, old people, children, all Kurdish people have become an Apo. They are Apoists now. They have acquired and captured the spirit, will, consciousness and mentality of Rêber Apo. They educate themselves on this basis. They have created a new Kurd, a free Kurd, an Apoist Kurd. You can close the doors as much as you want, trying to impose isolation. Thinking that you can prevent this struggle by crushing individuals is futile. That era has long passed. So, no matter what is done, it can no longer be prevented. The Kurd has become conscious, has organized and reached the level of understanding, distinguishing between right and wrong. They have gained willpower, assertiveness, courage and sacrifice. Rêber Apo has already done and achieved all these in his time. The rest comes down to our daily practice.

If we pay attention, this is happening all over the world. Wherever there is a Kurd, patriotic thought, consciousness, organization and actions are developing. Now the Turkish government is facing such a situation, they are becoming aware. Turkish politics is panicking because the current ruling power sees this. In a state of shock, it shows signs of insanity. Their words are absurd, their demeanor is absurd. They threaten everyone. If not America or Iran, they will threaten PUK or Iraq. They hope to find some confirmation that there are third parties behind the attacks of the guerrilla. Their attempts are futile, they cannot.

Now all the bonds of fascism are indeed untied. AKP-MHP fascism is in the process of dissolution. When the election results came out in May, everyone assumed that the AKP-MHP fascism and Tayyip Erdoğan’s administration became stronger. Now the collapse can clearly be seen. What did we say in the last interview? The guerrilla made their mark towards the end of last year. Again, the start of 2024 was marked by the guerrilla and this year will continue in this way.

2024 will be the year of the guerrilla. It will be the year of victory for the guerrilla. It will be the year the guerrilla crushes fascism, colonialism and genocide. Those who insist on attacking with this fascist, colonialist, genocidal mentality and politics will face the victorious resistance and actions of the guerrilla, they will be defeated, they will be devastated. There is no other way. Those who do not wish to end they do not want their end to be like this should change their mentality, values and politics. Let them learn to become human. Let them empathize a little and learn to value others.

They should recognize the ancient culture and power of the Kurdish people. Indeed, the Kurds have been the biggest supporting force for Turkishness for thousands of years. Have they made a mistake, or have they committed a crime? They have been supportive since Malazgirt. How could you receive so much support from them and then despise them. How could you exaggerate yourself so much and see yourself as great, trying to dehumanize the Kurds. No, if you do that, you will suffer defeat. Someone else will become conscious and organized. The Kurds have reached that state. They will give you the most meaningful and heavy lesson in history. They will hit your diseased brain and heart and make you learn to be human.

Now the Turkish state is experiencing such a situation in the face of the struggle of the guerrilla and the Kurdish people. The continuation of this fascist rule will bring the Turkish society face to face with such a severe situation. So really, people should understand and evaluate the consequences of Tayyip Erdoğan’s rule. They must oppose this. Turkey does not deserve this. This does not benefit the people of Turkey, or the future of Turkey. On the contrary, it leads to disaster.

The stability of Turkishness lies in Kurdish freedom and brotherhood. Therefore, it is imperative to fight for a democratic Turkey and a free Kurdistan, and to defeat this fascist, colonialist, genocidal, Kurdish-hating mentality and politics. They should learn a little about this, they should see the truth. They should wake up. The fighters, the historical resistance fighters are now serving a wakeup call. Now the society, laborers, workers and women of Turkey really need to wake up, see the concrete situation, the reality, and unite with the Kurdish people’s freedom struggle for their own liberation, and free themselves from this fascist, colonialist, genocidal mentality and politics. Our call is on this basis.

In the past, some people who couldn’t accept the strength of the guerrilla would claim that the MIT [Turkish Intelligence Service] was behind the guerrilla actions. They even put forward sick theories that their own intelligence organization was doing this against their state. Now they are looking for a criminal, they want everyone to be like Barzani. They want everyone to be a servant like the KDP, so people should do whatever they say, give whatever they demand. No one in the world will accept that and no one does.

Now they are holding others responsible. First, they wanted to turn to Rojava in case it was the USA. It is as if they were a little scared. Then they turn towards Iran and after Iraq via the PUK. Making allegations about the PUK, and threatening their leadership. They are also attacking like in the massacre of Kirkuk. They massacred a patriotic revolutionary woman from Rojava, from Hesekê in a despicable way. It is not clear what more they will do. What does this show? Actually, MIT are organized everywhere. It is organized all over South Kurdistan and Iraq. They want to take over Kirkuk. It was in the news today; they have established a new base in Duhok. They have more than 100 bases in South Kurdistan. This is occupation, there are occupation attacks.

They want to take Kirkuk. They suffered a heavy blow in the elections. Now they are trying to figure out how to reverse this and prevent a Kurdish governor from coming to Kirkuk. But mainly, of course, they want to bring these forces to the position of the KDP and achieve results that will make everyone attack the guerrilla and defeat the guerrilla on this basis. This is the aim; they’ve put all their energy there as if the guerrilla are attacking in Kirkuk. Again, what does Amediyê have to do with Sulaymaniyah or Kirkuk? Amediyê is closer to Barzani’s headquarters where the Barzanis are in charge.

They also realize that Iran is effective in this area. Therefore, they want to mobilize Iran in order to have some forces attack the PKK. For this reason, the Iranian President was supposed to go two times, but he could not go. The last time, the AKP administration committed a massacre on behalf of ISIS a day before the Iranian presidents visit. Later information was obtained that the murderers traveled from Turkey and stayed in Turkey for years. They came to Turkey via Mosul and obviously they ar MIT agents. Our comrade Cemil Bayik also explained this. He said that the attackers were MIT agents. Our administration made a statement in this regard and confirmed it.

They want to make a deal with Iran to allegedly fight against terrorism jointly. If the President of Iran had gone, they would have discussed this topic. Who is a terrorist, according to them? The PKK. The Turkish government would have said “Let’s attack the PKK together. Look, terrorism is hitting you too, the Kurdish problem is your problem too. They say let’s make a deal together. Then bring Iraq, PUK and KDP on our side and let them wage a joint war against the PKK.” Why should they? Everyone has their own interests.

We are of the opinion that the Iranian state can understand this. Many circles are trying to draw Iran into a harsher war in the Middle East. They want to make Iran fight intensely with America, Britain, Israel, and so on. Turkey is leading this concept. By putting others in a difficult situation, especially the AKP administration wants to make joint actions with Iran against the PKK. We don’t believe that those circles would fall for games. We believe that the Iranian state, the PUK administration and the Iraqi administration will see the truth. In other words, the danger is serious and great. Also, the Turkish administration makes baseless allegations despite being in the process of collapse. The other circles should tell the Turkish government the following: You also have power, do what you can. What do you want from us?

What Turkey wants to say is “come and fight for me and I will be saved.” They won’t, we don’t believe that they will because AKP-MHP is really experiencing its most difficult situation and period. No one should support them because they are in a position of great danger attacking the Kurds, attacking the Free Kurd, being hostile to anyone who wants democratization in the Middle East.

We are of the opinion that these efforts will not yield any results. Neither the Iraqi state is so weak-willed, nor the PUK administration, nor Iran. They have power, they have their own positions. They see their own interests. It is obvious that Turkey wants to trick them with conspiracies and provocations. Then we hope and believe that they will not fall for the Turkish Republic’s game.

Just as the AKP-MHP massacred a Kurdish woman in Kirkuk, they could also massacre an Arab or another race. We need to hold them to account for this. It is necessary to stop MIT from organizing conspiracies and assassinations all over Kurdistan and Arabia. It is necessary to join hands against this aggression, to form democratic unity, a democratic front, an anti-fascist patriotic front for the Middle East. This is our call to all Middle Eastern forces.

Coming to the end of our interview, is there anything left that you would like to point out?

Today is the tenth anniversary of the declaration of self-administration in Rojava. I salute the tenth anniversary of the declaration of democratic autonomy in Rojava. I congratulate and salute everyone who has been making efforts for the implementation of Rêber Apo’s project of ‘Democratic Confederalism’, ‘Democratic Autonomy’ over the past ten years.

An important trial is being conducted; a historical process is taking place. First, we need to see this, Rojava and the democratic confederal project is the only hope for humanity. Young people, women, workers and laborers all over the world are turning in this direction, their hopes are here. They want to learn something from here and to find, see and win their future in the democratic nation project created here. This is very valuable, very meaningful. On this basis, I congratulate the peoples of North and East Syria for entering such a revolutionary process with great courage and sacrifice. I also believe that they will succeed.

The reactionaries are attacking to prevent this. Undoubtedly, the attacks will continue. Manipulating this reaction is the Turkish state and the AKP-MHP fascist dictatorship. We have always said this, and we must always say it. Everyone should know this well. This fascist dictatorship is hostile to everything. Enemy to the good, enemy to the beautiful, enemy to freedom, enemy to democracy, enemy to women, enemy to youth, enemy to Kurds, enemy to humanity, enemy to peoples. What did the bard say? “Enemies to you, enemies to me, enemies to thinking people. The homeland is the home of the people. My dear, they are enemies of the homeland.”

The AKP-MHP are enemies of a free homeland, enemies of free thought. That’s how we should see the power we’re up against. They are very uncomfortable with the democratic autonomous development, with the organization, the construction of democratic nation, the fraternal coexistence of Kurds, Turkmens, Arabs, Circassians, Assyrians, Assyrians, all peoples. AKP-MHP realize that this is a force that will destroy their fascist, monist dictatorship.

What if everyone in Turkey sees this, the peoples are trembling already, wondering how they will be held to account in 100 or maybe 200 years for the massacres that have been committed. It is that fear which drives these attacks. The AKP-MHP are enemies, and they are conducting despicable attacks. They use everything as an excuse to attack, and later they make the counterattacks of the guerrilla another excuse to attack more.

If they were brave, they would have fought back where they were hit. What do they want from the people in Rojava, from their wheat, lentils, hospitals, schools and homes? Did they attack the AKP-MHP? They have nothing to do with it. Purely Kurdish hostility, fascist, genocidal, colonialist mentality and politics do this. This is the case even if there are no actions being taken. We said this last time, and everyone confirmed it. This is the truth; the people are resisting, resistance is developing. The attitude is good, it will get better. It will be stronger; the people will retaliate more effectively.

The most important seed of this resistance is of course Afrin. We are experiencing the sixth anniversary of the occupation of Afrin. Since 20 January, 6 years ago, the most despicable attack in history was launched against Afrin. For 58 days, 60 days, the people and guerrillas of Afrin gave the greatest resistance in history against this despicable occupation, this was the resistance of honor. It was called the resistance of the century. Let us remember those days. Let us remember the reality of that great resistance.

In other words, it is the resistance in Afrin [Efrîn] that created Northern and Eastern Syria, Rojava Kurdistan. Yes, it was great in the fight against ISIS. It can never be denied, but the resistance in Afrin against AKP-MHP fascism, that is, against ISIS’s overlords, was the greatest yet. Everyone should know this.

Now this resistance has been going on for 6 years. The ‘Efrîn Liberation Forces’ (ELF) are really striking a blow against the invaders. They are narrow, but they are at the right place. They have the right attitude, are honorable, represent freedom and humanity. They represent the honor of Northern and Eastern Syria. They represent the honor of Kurdistan, the honor of humanity.

I congratulate them, I congratulate those resistances. They also announced their annual balance sheets. I hope they will develop much more. From Afrin to Serêkaniyê, they will increase the struggle to break the Turkish occupation. This is a work of struggle. The fighting force is the ELF. They have understood this principle well.

The women, youth and all libertarian forces of Northeast Syria are following in their footsteps. They represent that honor and want to lead it to success. I hope that they will take more revenge. They will ask for accountability, they will develop retaliatory actions, they will resist more. But no one will leave their homes. We said last time that the aim of all these attacks and threats is to scare, frighten and kidnap. No one should run away, no matter what. Either we live freely on these lands, or we live freely on these lands. There is no other way. There is no other place to go, there is no place to live. There is no other kind of freedom seeking attitude.

Our people of Rojava, the people of Northeast Syria have learned this truth well. They learned from Rêber Apo, they learned from the resistance for freedom. With great courage and sacrifice, they took up the struggle at a pioneering level. We believe they will continue this. By defeating all kinds of aggression, they will protect their honor and maintain their freedom. They will further develop their democratic governance and succeed. I salute them all and wish them success.