our statements

march 30, 2021

The HBDH Carries on the Tradition of Mahir Çayan and his Comrades

On March 30, 1972, Mahir Çayan and nine of his comrades fell martyr in the village Kızıldere (Tokat/Niksar, Turkey). This resulted from an armed confrontation with special warfare forces of the fascist coup of March 12. We would like to respectfully commemorate these valuable revolutionaries of the peoples of Turkey. And we promise to put into practice their longing for a democratic Turkey and a free Kurdistan.

Mahir Çayan and his comrades along with two THKO militants had taken three British citizens as their hostages in order to save Deniz Gezmiş, Hüseyin İnan and Yusuf Aslan from their imminent death penalty. They wanted to free three revolutionaries from the hands of the enemy in exchange for three British citizens. But the fascist forces of the Turkish state decided to kill both the revolutionaries and the British citizens.

Mahir Çayan, Deniz Gezmiş and İbrahim Kaypakkaya – alongside their respective comrades – wanted to free Turkey from the hegemony of imperialism and build a democratic Turkey. In a democratic Turkey, Kurdistan would also achieve its freedom. That is why all of them considered the Kurdish question and the liberation of the Kurds one of Turkey`s most pressing issues. Young and brave revolutionaries of the Kurds had also taken their place in the organizations of these revolutionaries. Thus, Hüseyin İnan, Hüseyin Cevahir, Ali Haydar Yıldız and many more young Kurds fell martyr while fighting as members of these organizations.

Our leader Abdullah Öcalan had been impressed by a speech of Mahir Çayan and his analysis of the Kurdish question at the Istanbul Technical University. Consequently, he became a sympathizer of the THKP-C. When Mahir Çayan and his comrades fell martyr in Kızıldere, our leader Abdullah Öcalan – then a university student – led a students` boycott at the Faculty of Political Science to protest the massacre. For this reason he was later arrested and spent seven months in the Mamak Military Prison. On their way to being executed Deniz Gezmiş, Hüseyin İnan and Yusuf Aslan where taken through the prison block where our leader Abdullah Öcalan was being held. After he was released from prison, our leader Abdullah Öcalan organized young students at the Faculty of Political Science with its strong base of THKP-C sympathizers. There, he played a leading role in the organization of the revolutionary youth of Ankara and ADYÖD. His response to the death of Mahir Çayan, Deniz Gezmiş and their respective comrades was a measure of his loyalty and commitment to their cause.

Mahir Çayan and his comrades have left a very important revolutionary and democratic legacy in Turkey. Today, their legacy is being kept alive by the revolutionary coalition of the HBDH (Peoples’ United Revolutionary Movement). The common struggle for the dreams of these martyrs is also being waged in the arena of democratic politics. Their struggle and the price they paid was not in vain. It is being kept alive in today`s struggle for a democratic Turkey and a free Kurdistan.

Once again we would like to bow respectfully before their memory. We repeat our promise to increase the struggle for their dreams: a democratic Turkey and a free Kurdistan based on peoples` fraternity.

Co-Presidency

KCK Executive Council