Nuha Ömer: We will send 3 million 699 thousand signatures for Abdullah Öcalan

The Syrian Abdullah Öcalan Initiative is preparing to send the 3 million 699 thousand signatures it collected in the campaign that ended on 4 April to the European Union.

Nuha Ömer from the Syrian Abdullah Öcalan Initiative said that the main goal of the campaign that collected 3 million 699 thousand signatures until 4 April, is not only to break the isolation but also to ensure the physical freedom of the Kurdish people’s leader. The signatures will be sent to the European Union.

Nuha Ömer talked to ANF about the campaign.

The second phase of the campaign launched for the physical freedom of Kurdish People's Leader Abdullah Öcalan continues. What work has been carried out so far?

The campaign initiated for Leader Apo's [Abdullah Öcalan ] physical freedom had a very important place in public opinion. This campaign was launched on 10 October 2023, with the participation of activists from 74 countries. This gradually developing and growing campaign has exceeded 74 countries and spread almost all over the world. Those who initiated and took part in this campaign are lawyers, writers, activists, politicians and intellectuals. Four days after the announcement of the campaign, on 14 October, active participation was achieved with all popular components in Northern and Eastern Syria. Very important actions were developed throughout the campaign process. The most striking and impressive among these activities was the reading of Leader Apo's defenses. All over the world, people read Leader's defenses. The second phase of the campaign began on 15 February, with the press release on the big march in Cologne. The second phase of the campaign has already started with many activities. 8 March, 12 March, Newroz, were all venues to move the campaign forward. Of course, the campaign will continue in this way until the desired result is achieved.

You have carried out a lot of work within the scope of the campaign in Northern and Eastern Syria. One of these activities was a signature campaign. Why is this campaign important?

The most important of our work is the signature campaign. This is not the first time this action has been carried out, but this campaign was quite effective. The campaign ended on 4 April. Our goal was to collect 3 million signatures, and we actually collected a total of 3 million 699 thousand signatures. This is a concrete expression of the loyalty of the people of Northern and Eastern Syria to Leader Apo. This campaign was launched within the scope of Northern and Eastern Syria, but some cities under the control of the Damascus government were also included. Syrian cities such as Damascus, Aleppo, Latqiye, Suweyda, Quneitra, Selemiyê and Hema participated in the signature campaign despite the difficult conditions and the pressure on them. The signatures will now be sent to the European Union. Leader Apo's case has now become a global issue. In this sense, all other human rights and humanitarian institutions such as the European Union, CPT, ECHR are responsible for this. They do not fulfill these responsibilities. In fact, this campaign is not the first effort we have carried out to ensure that these institutions embrace their responsibilities. We had previously sent letters to all these institutions. They are independent institutions and have their own responsibilities. They must fulfill these responsibilities. Leader Apo's cause is a political, legal and humanitarian cause. In this sense, it is a human duty for everyone to fight for this cause. All political parties and civil institutions in Northern and Eastern Syria took an active role in collecting and sending these signatures. Diplomatic efforts are now being made to send the collected signatures. A specific committee was formed for this.

How will the campaign progress from now on? Is there a deadline to the second phase and will there be a third phase?

The current system is a capitalist one, and most of the problems stem from this system. The most striking aspect was that the country where this campaign first started was actually the center of capitalism. In this sense, the importance of this campaign is much greater.

Of course, the campaign will continue. After the second stage, it can also go to a third stage. The main goal here is not only to break the isolation but also to free Leader Apo.

What kind of work is involved in the second phase of the campaign?

The physical freedom of the leadership is not only for the Kurdish or Arab people. Today, all people see the solution to their problems in the philosophy of the Leader. The Turkish state must now give up these inhumane practices. The system implemented in Imralı today is a special system. It does not comply with any legal or human rights rules. On the contrary, it violates all legal rules. This system has serious effects on the Leader's health. This in itself is a great injustice. Now, as the Leadership Initiative, we have put forward two types of work. One of these is the physical freedom of the Leader; The second is to spread the Leadership philosophy all over the world. In this sense, our work will not only be within the scope of Northern and Eastern Syria. We have operations in all countries of the Middle East and abroad and will continue to expand further. Concretely, the work we set before us in this process will primarily include sending the collected signatures to the EU, and our ideological work on some basic and important issues. Among these, issues such as education and ecology will be taken as a basis. It is necessary to explain the philosophy and paradigm of the Leader well to all peoples and especially to public components. We already had studies on the legal dimension, but these studies will continue more strongly. Our routine work will continue uninterruptedly. In other words, our work such as congresses, conferences, panels, sending letters will not stop.

What effects did the campign have?

Of course, this campaign had very serious effects. In the past years, the Leader case was treated only as a Kurdish problem. When we look at it today, the Leader's cause has become a universal cause. Many people in the world see the physical freedom of the Leader as their own freedom and find the solution to all problems in the philosophy of the Leader. The leadership has produced alternative solutions to all problems, from personal problems to social problems, ecological, religious, political and social problems. For this reason, the entire people actively participated in the Leader's freedom campaign. All popular components in Northern and Eastern Syria see their own solutions and future in the Leader.

Did you, as the Initiative, carry out any diplomatic work before the leadership's campaign? How did that work contribute to the development of the campaign?

We have carried out many types of work before. In many countries, there were efforts to introduce and explain the philosophy and ideology of the Leader, as well as his cause, to the agenda of the people of the world. Our delegations went to many countries, including South Africa. We also worked in the Middle East. A conference was held with the participation of 10 Arab countries. Many important people attended this conference and laid the groundwork for this campaign. Again, in Syria, law and health conferences were held for the Leader in Raqqa. Important people from many parts of Syria attended these conferences. Many important works were published here, too. As the Leadership Initiative, we are working on the many ideas that emerged at the various conferences. Our diplomatic work had a significant impact on the campaign.