Russian association calls for an end to the isolation of Öcalan

The human rights of the imprisoned leader of Kurdistan Abdullah Ocalan are violated.

Association of Russian Lawyers for Human Rights condemned the isolation imposed on Kurdish People’s Leader Abdullah Öcalan.

As the representatives of the Kurdistan Workers' Party told to the press service of the Association of Russian Lawyers for Human Rights, from the moment that Kurdistan’s leader Abdullah Ocalan was imprisoned in 1999 in the island prison of Imrali in Turkey, the PKK leader is kept in solitary confinement, deprived of any contact with the outside world, including books, newspapers, television, telephone conversations, and also deprived of meetings with lawyers, human rights activists and with family members.

According to the report, only in 2017, the lawyers of Abdullah Ocalan were denied 100 times a meeting with the principal; in 2017, relatives received 44 denials of visits to a prisoner at his place of detention. At the same time, representatives of the Kurdish people say, Abdullah Ocalan is deprived of the opportunity to communicate with other prisoners - he can watch them about 5 hours a week, his walks are limited, there is no reliable information about the prisoner's health status, providing him with the necessary medical care. At the same time, the reason for the refusal of all contacts is the fear of the Turkish authorities that Abdullah Ocalan may transfer his instructions to the Kurdish people, to lead the party and the activities of the authorities of Kurdistan.

The defense of Abdullah Ocalan also reported that complaints of torture remain unnoticed by European structures, the defense considers negative decisions politically motivated in favor of Turkey. According to the representatives of the PKK, the defense repeatedly appealed to the European Court of Human Rights and the Council of Europe's Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman Treatment, ignoring complaints of torture against the leader of Kurdistan, without changing the conditions of detention Abdullah Ocalan.

Maria Bast, Chairwoman of the Association of Russian Lawyers for Human Rights, made the following comment:

“We condemn the arrest of Abdullah Ocalan himself, his imprisonment, finding him in prison, we believe that it is unacceptable to hold in conclusion the leader of the national liberation movement - this is a gross violation of the people’s right to self-determination guaranteed by all international institutions and supranational conventions ratified by Turkey. Moreover, every nation has the right, in the absence of democratic mechanisms, to revolt, and this is not a crime, but is a human right in cases where a person defends his human right, and the people his freedom. We demand from Turkey to immediately stop the use of torture against Abdullah Ocalan, we demand to stop the violation of human rights and freedoms in respect of Abdullah Ocalan. The unimpeded admission of lawyers, the admission of relatives in accordance with the recommendations of the UN and the Council of Europe, the practice of the European Court of Human Rights are a guarantee of respect for human rights and freedoms in places of detention, as well as a tool for protection against torture.

According to Maria Bast, it is important to note that Abdullah Ocalan is not only a political figure, but also a scientist-philosopher, doctor of science, whose thoughts and ideas are the property of all mankind. “What the Turkish authorities are doing, they encroach not only on the life and health of a politician, but also encroach on scientific thought and the development of science, therefore every case of torture, every refusal of a lawyer and relatives to appeal to international institutions is necessary, in particular, to turn to the European human rights court. Moreover, in cases of torture, the European Court of Human Rights is obliged to consider cases as a matter of priority and to respond immediately.”

Chairwoman of the Association of Russian Lawyers for Human Rights continued: “I think that it is necessary to knock on the European Court of Human Rights more actively, but in turn I want to emphasize that the entire responsibility for the life and health of Abdullah Ocalan lies with Turkey as a state. As far as I know, Turkey is striving for the European Union, but how they can strive for the EU, violating human rights and freedoms and infringing the rights of an entire people.”