KCK’s Bayık discloses latest information on Imralı

"Despite obstacles, leader Apo's thoughts are accepted by the majority of the Kurdish people. Today, the thoughts of Leader Apo are influential in all parts of Kurdistan. Kurds will certainly have a free and democratic life on the basis of his thoughts."

The Co-Chairman of the KCK Executive Council Cemil Bayik stated that after the occupation of Afrin, a delegation went to İmralı and after the meeting the pressures on Öcalan were intensified. Bayik gave important information about the meeting in this interview with ANF.

Criticizing the CPT's stance, Bayik said that in fact the institution ends up being part of the isolation policy of the Turkish State.

Pointing out at the attacks against both the Kurdish People's Leader Abdullah Öcalan and his thoughts for the Middle East and Kurdistan, Bayık stated that Öcalan's health, security and freedom and anti-fascism movements are closely intertwined.

We summarise here the main points of Co-Chairman of KCK Executive Council Cemil Bayik's written answers to ANF's questions:

Murat Karayılan has said that a delegation having to do with the resistance in Afrin went to İmralı in the past days and that after this visit the torture system [imposed on Ocalan] further worsened. What kind of information do you have in this regard? Can you share what you know about Ocalan's situation with the public?

After the statement by the CPT, and after some information we received ourselves, we wondered whether indeed the CPT was making this statement two years later in order to cover the pressures in İmralı. That’s why Karayilan made this statement. In the information we received, it was said that a delegation went to İmralı during the Resistance in Afrin, and tried to impose something on Leader Apo, and when Leader Apo refused these impositions, the oppression against him increased. It was stated that the imposition on Leader Apo was related to Afrin and Rojava, and Leader Apo took a stand against these approaches. It was also said that after Leader Apo's attitude, new restrictions as to living spaces and facilities were imposed and his radio and television were taken away from him.

We have received this information after the occupation of Afrin city center. Murat Karayilan had made statements in those days. The information was new. The statements by the CPT were not explanatory. Clearly, the new information, the unsatisfactory statement by the CPT, the other facts made us and our friends even more worried. In this context, Karayilan made such a statement in order to put forth these concerns, to invite the CPT to respond and take up its responsibilities and to warn Turkish state officials.

The information we have received is not so comprehensive; it is an indirect information. The informant has gone to some of our associations, and referred that some pressures and restrictions have been imposed on Leader Apo during the Afrin Resistance, and that Leader Apo has been deprived of his radio and television and that his space has been restricted.

Clearly, we cannot state that this information is 100% correct. However, we do believe that the person providing this information can be trusted.

Inevitably when it comes to Leader Apo, any kind of information arouses our anxiety and we get serious. In particular, it was necessary to push the CPT to face up its responsibility and speak out. […]

We know from the past years that when the struggle of the people has risen, whenever the conflict between the Kurdish Freedom Movement and the Turkish state has increased, the place where the AKP government has developed its first and main repression has been İmralı.

If we look at how the war has intensified over the last two years, how the AKP-MHP government has waged a war against the Kurdish people, we can see also how, in the attempt to crash this struggle, the fascist government has put its pressure on Leader Apo in İmralı and increase the oppression.

[…] We have no information about Leader Apo since the 5 of April 2015, the only other news having come from the visit his brother Mehmet Ocalan was able to make in September 2016. We do not know the situation of our leader.

However, from time to time we received information in various forms: They go to the Leader, they do things, but the Leader doesn’t pay them any attention. He says, I do what I had to, I said what I had to, there is nothing more left to do for me. One and a half years ago, this kind of information came. Again, people related to the state convey this information. To which extent are this news true, we do not know. Likewise, the information that someone went to the Leader and that the Leader did not accept whatever they asked for, has reached us from time to time.

- The CPT released a report on Ocalan. You criticized this report. Why do you think such a report was released after two years?

The CPT should have been more careful. If you publish a report with a two-year delay, the least you can say is: two years ago this was the situation we found. Now, two years on, we don’t know how the situation is. They could have said that a new visit was necessary, as the situation the report refers too is two years old. Yet, they reveal today the suspicion they had two years ago. And clearly, not just us, but every democratic people and organization would feel the same suspicion. Especially as everyone can hear the AKP-MHP fascism, and seeing the attitude of Erdogan against Kurds: I’ll destroy them, I’ll hit them, I’ll crush them…

On the other hand, another issue is that the relevant government should give permission to publish such a report. That's what they say. If that is the case then why permission was given to publish this report now? What, indeed, the Turkish state, the AKP-MHP fascist government intended to conceal by allowing such report to be publish at this time?

Leader Apo is not any prisoner. More than 40 million people are interested in his fate. It concerns our movement. It concerns all the democratic forces in Turkey. It concerns the Middle East people.

And to this respect the CPT has made a confusing, suspicious, explanation that brings many questions to mind. This statement by the CPT is indeed irresponsible. […]

If the situation has worsened, as it has, then why the Council of Europe, to which the CPT is affiliated, does not issue any sanction? If there is no sanction, if there is nothing they can do then what do these institutions mean? Why are those visits made?

If the principles of the Council of Europe are violated, is sanction not necessary? This violation lasts two years, but there is no sanction! How could this be?

For this reason, we are still very skeptical of an explanation given with two years delay.

We think that both the Turkish state's permission and the explanation of the CPT are in fact the cover of the increasing pressures on İmralı.

[…] In light of the new information we have received we believe that it is necessary for the CPT to immediately go to İmralı, to make the necessary inspections in İmralı.

[…] Kurds have become a community that everyone can oppress and insult. This is the message the approach of the Council of Europe is sending. On the other hand it seems like that Turkey, like the spoiled child or Europe, is allowed to carry out all kinds of persecution and repression; genocide; it can burn down cities; kill civilians. This is normal for the Turkish state. The Turkish state has invented a story for itself; I am fighting against terrorism attacking me.

The world also seems to have accepted that story.

Since the beginning of the 1990s, the Turkish state is committing a crime. This crime is accepted by Europe, hiding behind the excuse used by Turkey of being a EU candidate country. […]

Asked about Leader Ocalan's ideas for a new way of life for the Middle East and Kurdistan, Cemil Bayik replied, remembering that on 4 April Abdullah Ocalan will turn 69:

“The birth of the Leader Apo is a rebirth not only for the people of Kurdistan but also for the peoples of the Middle East. In this way I celebrate the birthday of Leader Apo. I believe that Leader Apo's 69 years of meaningful life has brought a lot to the peoples of the Middle East and humanity, especially the Kurdish people. The thoughts of Leader Apo are of course very meaningful and valuable not only in terms of Kurdistan but also in terms of peoples of the Middle East, and are meaningful and valuable in terms of humanity as well. In this respect, it seems that Leader Apo's views are dangerous not only for the political forces enemy of the Kurds, but for the reactionary forces of the entire Middle East despotic powers. This is because these ideas are aiming at the freedom of the Kurdish people and the peoples of the Middle East as well as at the establishing of a democratic modernity system against capitalist modernity.

Again, capitalist modernity sees the thoughts of Leader Apo as an alternative in terms of their systems. Leader Apo's socialism, which is to be realized through the democratic confederalism system based on a paradigm having women's liberation and an ecological and democratic society at its core, is a mentality and struggle which is not accepted by the capitalist modernist forces. In this respect, we can say that there is a strong resistance against the spread of the ideas of Leader Apo.

Leader Apo proposes a mindset that will lift the nationalism that capitalist modernity has imposed on the Middle East. These forces do not want Leader Apo's thoughts to develop, strengthen and practice in the Middle East.

[…] If such an isolation from the world is imposed on Leader Apo, one of the most important reasons for this is the power of the thought of Leader Apo.

[…] In particular, the imperialist capitalist forces wanting to dominate the region do not want the ideas of the Leader Apo prevail in the Third World, in which the old balances are destroyed and the new balances are to be established. They want to prevent Leader Apo's thoughts in order to prevent the peoples from getting stronger. This is the reason why the heavy isolation is imposed on Leader Apo. This is also the reason for the attack on Afrin, where the leader Apo's democratic system was established. The attack on Afrin is an attack against the Kurdish people as well as an attack against democracy in the Middle East.

Despite the obstacles, leader Apo's thoughts are accepted by the majority of the Kurdish people. Today, the thoughts of Leader Apo are influential in all parts of Kurdistan. The Kurdish people will certainly have a free and democratic life on the basis of the thoughts of Leader Apo today and in the future. Because the Kurds can only be the leading people of the Middle East on the axis of thought of Leader Apo.

Indeed, Kurds today are at the vanguard of democratization in Turkey, they are also the leading force in the democratization of Syria, Iraq and Iran. Certainly, the thoughts of Leader Apo have an idea of ​​developing democratization not only in terms of Kurds but also in terms of Arabs, Persians and the whole of Middle East peoples.


There is no PKK in Rojava, but Erdogan and the fascist rulers are afraid of every place where the Leader’s thought can be found.

Whoever promotes the thoughts of our Leader, defends them, and is trying to organize a life based on his thoughts, becomes the enemy. Not only the Kurds but also the Arabs and Syrians have become enemies for the AKP-MHP government!

When the parliament of Raqqa endorsed a democratic understanding that is close to the thought of Leader Apo, it was declared an enemy. They are all PKK, they say”.

The interview ends with a question on the next phase of the struggle about the situation of Leader Öcalan.

Cemil Bayik replied:

“Our Freedom Movement and our people are always sensitive about the situation of the Leader. The health, safety and freedom of our leader is a subject that needs to be moved every second by our sensitivity.

For this we will always organise actions and activities. We will never allow the removal of the situation of our Leader from the agenda. No one, no power, will be able to loosen our sensitivity towards our leader. We will continue the struggle for the health, security and freedom of our leader and we will keep this issue on the agenda constantly.

Providing health, safety and freedom for our Leader, however, is mainly linked to the development of our struggle. The more we improve our struggle, the more sensitive we are to the leader's health, safety and freedom issue.

Our leader is to attain healthy, safe and free working conditions, but only by improving the struggle. We need to fully understand the connection between our struggle and the safety of our Leader. Turkish AKP-MHP fascism attacks Kurds and at the same time attacks our Leader.

In our agenda, we are mainly promoting the struggle against the genocide policy of the colonialist AKP-MHP fascism against the Kurds. The situation of our Leader is also linked to this struggle.

The Turkish state has removed all the opportunities for democratic struggle. From this point of view, everyone has to give full support to the guerrilla struggle. It needs strong support. Young people, men and women, must participate in the struggle for freedom and have to participate in the guerrilla struggle.

Especially in Turkey and Kurdistan cities all kinds of meaningful action are valuable. In this respect, we can develop the struggle for freedom by developing all kinds of small and big actions.

We will engage in the struggle in 2018 thinking in the Leader’s line and to develop in all four parts of Kurdistan”.

The struggle of the Kurdish people for freedom and to defeat fascism goes hand in hand with the struggle for the freedom, safety and health of our Leader.