Kalkan: PKK has not attacked yet and its retaliations are limited

PKK Executive Committee Member Duran Kalkan stated that the Turkish state was waging an all-out war, and the only possible response for HPG and civilians was to display an all-out resistance.

PKK Executive Committee Member Duran Kalkan stated that the Turkish state was waging an all-out war, and the only possible response for HPG and civilians was to display an all-out resistance.

PKK Executive Committee Member stated that they valued the calls for a ceasefire, and HPG has only been retaliating in a limited way so far. Kalkan criticized Davutoğlu’s statement that they hit 400 targets in one night, and said that guerrillas had the right to retaliate for each attack but have not yet responded in full force.

Kalkan asked what would happen and whether society’s democratic and local self-rule would be strengthened in the case that PKK stopped retaliating. He said that those who would like the clashes to end would have to focus on the reasons for these clashes, and the best response to AKP fascism would be strengthening Democratic Autonomy.

In his interview with Med Nuce TV, which was translated by ANF English service below, Kalkan noted their strategy had not included fighting the army, and guerrillas would have not retaliated if the state had not bragged about ‘hitting 400 targets in one night.’ Kalkan highlighted that AKP was using the army for the protection of its political power, and everyone should resist against the police and protect their neighborhoods in order to prevent further arrests. Below is the English version of Med Nuce TV’s interview with Duran Kalkan, translated by ANF English service.

AKP Government carried out Zergelê massacre on the first year anniversary of Shengal massacre. What does this mean?

I condemn Shengal massacre and commemorate the martyrs who lost their lives during ISIS attacks on Êzîdî Kurdish people in Shengal. I also commemorate guerrillas such as Genco, Dilgeş, Armanç, and Berxwedan who fell during the defense of Shengal. AKP fascism carried out a massacre in Qandil’s Zergelê village in a way similar to the ISIS massacre in Shengal. Perpetrators of Shengal and Zergelê massacres, ISIS and AKP, are brutal, and everyone faces a power that does not hesitate spreading terror. I strongly condemn Zergelê massacre and commemorate the slain civilians with respect. AKP attempts to portray the massacred civilians as PKK guerrillas are deplorable, even YNK declared some of Zergelê martyrs to be its civilian members. AKP is pretending to fight ISIS, but is actually attacking and targeting Kurdish people and the PKK.

PKK has been in a war against ISIS since August 3, 2014, and this war divided the entire world into two camps: powers that support ISIS and the democratic forces that oppose ISIS. Kobanê resistance was the democratic struggle of the latter camp, and everyone against fascism came together in opposition to ISIS.


Attacking PKK is defending ISIS, AKP claims to be fighting against PKK and ISIS as a third party but this is nothing more than a deception. Turkey has been sending hundreds of trucks to ISIS and supporting the gangs in Rojava, Turkey’s attack on the PKK means Turkish support for ISIS. Like NATO’s objection to recent Turkish air strikes, everyone fighting against ISIS should raise their voices in opposition to Turkish policies.

Turkey pretends to be fighting ISIS, but it was Turkish intelligence agents within ISIS who recently attacked Turkish soldiers. Turkey was able to make the US believe that Turkey was under ISIS attack through this deception, and began to attack us under the pretense of fighting ISIS. AKP is in alliance with ISIS and everyone should decide whether they support this alliance or the struggle of democratic union centered around Kurdish resistance. Turkey is a threat for all Kurds and could even bomb Hewler or Kirkuk, just like they have threatened to bomb Kirkuk as we recently found out. Turkey’s anti-Kurdishness makes it look like a bull that attacks whenever it sees something red. All Kurdish powers in alliance with AKP should stop collaborating with Turkey in exchange for petty interest calculations.


How did the war restart when everyone was expecting peace after June 7 elections?

Remember our statements after the election describing the victory of HDP as the restructuring of Turkey for more peace and democracy. Despite its electoral loss, AKP acted as the government and made the important decision of restarting war. AKP was either going to respect election results and negotiate the steps for democratization laid out in the Dolmabahçe statement of February 28, or reinitiate armed conflict as it had planned during the National Security Council meeting on October 30, 2014 in order to restore its political power. Unlike AKP claims, we were not giving commands to HDP and our statements after the elections were more of a warning to everyone who favored democratization. HDP and CHP interpreted the political process too late, and did not foresee the current war as we had done right after the elections. Our commentary on the elections was not a ‘PKK intervention’ but a call to democratic forces so that they take initiative and ensure the transformation of İmralı meetings into a negotiation. I would like to ask the Turkish public and the supporters of AKP, what harm was there in previous KCK statements asking for negotiations based on the 10 principles of Dolmabahçe statement centered on Leader Apo’s freedom, the transformation of the parliament to a constituent assembly, the drafting of a democratic constitution, the implementation of legal reforms, and the end of the fascist military regime of September 12 in Turkey.


Once again, PKK’s warnings were not acts of terror but demands for peace and democracy. We only made statements after the elections, but the state responded with the political genocide operations and air strikes on July 24. AKP rule is nothing but a fallen government, AKP officials such as Bülent Arınç should stop making statements frequently since they have not been elected on June 7. Irregularities like this one show that there are cracks within the regime, Arınç has been on the spotlight even more than the Prime Minister himself!

AKP government got aggressive on July 24 because it is losing its power, and the only way for AKP to win the upcoming elections would be preventing the masses from voting from now on. The transition government’s declaration of war is not legitimate because this government did not receive enough support from the voters on June 7.


Turkish officials recently said that they made an agreement with the US, in exchange for what was this agreement made? Remember previous agreements between Turkey and the US in 2007, 2008, and 2009? Those agreements helped neither Yaşar Büyükanıt nor İlker Başbuğ, and the most recent agreement would not help Tayyip Erdoğan or Ahmet Davutoğlu. The decline in AKP’s power will inevitably continue. Davutoğlu’s recent statement conveying surprise at the presence of armed people within Turkish borders is manipulative, PKK guerrillas within Turkey have been armed for 35 years. AKP’s inability of providing solutions is the main reason behind Davutoğlu’s fake surprise, this inability led to AKP’s use of the army and the police force for committing crimes and murdering civilians.


As the PKK, we did not have any plans or strategies of fighting against the Turkish military. We were engaged in solving the problems of democratization and self-administration. Davutoğlu’s use of the army for attacking us, and boast of ‘hitting 400 targets in one night’ led to the on-going armed conflict. AKP is using the police force and the army in order to save its political rule. I would like to remind the conflict between the army and AKP in recent history, and end by saying that AKP’s rule is temporary and AKP.


This process is also witnessing calls for a cease-fire from many circles. Is such a development possible?

Right, HDP got a bit activer, so did the CHP. Some democratic circles are calling both sides to take hands off trigger and turn to the table of talks. We appreciate these calls but it must be known that this conflict wasn't started by our side. It is not right to talk about the actions by PKK without mentioning the most recent Amed and Suruç massacres, and increasingly ongoing repression and arrests.

On the other hand, guerrillas haven't pulled the trigger yet. Their current actions are limited retaliation. Prime Minister Davutoğlu himself announced that 400 targets were hit during the first night of airstrikes, which gives the guerrilla the right to retaliate 400 times. Besides, a few thousand people have been detained and arrested after that, which also requires retaliation. In this regard, guerrillas haven't taken up arms or pulled the trigger yet.

Separately, the problem is not the presence of a conflict but the reasons behind it. PKK is not a military force that just took up arms and took to the mountains for no reason. The government is not conducting these attacks for no reason, either. There are causes of this conflict and there can be no ceasefire or solution without a consideration and settlement of these causes.

Guerrillas have fired no single bullets since early 2013 but what did the government do in response? Nothing. Two and a half years passed in vain. We do not want to end up in the same situation. We didn't take to the mountains, nor we are not giving a fight for nothing. We defend and need a free and democratic life. This is what we fight for.

The conflict will not end unless its causes are eliminated. The reason for this conflict is not that 'PKK took to the mountains and took up arms', as they claim it to be. We took to the mountains but we are putting forward significant solution proposals. Leader Apo made a major effort to be able to develop a solution for democratic politics but they disappointed all these.


The problem is caused by the monist, chauvinist, nationalist and dictatorial ruling of the AKP. There is no democratic ruling, the society cannot rule itself.

To give an instance, the deputies, mayors and village headmen are elected but they have no influence on the local administration because all the authority is held by the governors appointed by Ankara. AKP says 'we ended the hegemony of the appointed on the elected , we are establishing the ruling of the elected', but this is a lie. The ruling belongs to the appointed, not the elected. This is not how democracy and democratic ruling can be achieved. There exists a dictatorship of the appointed provincial and district governors on the elected representatives. This is not democracy. Neither Kurds nor Turkey can bu ruled with this system any more.

This is a matter of mindset and politics due to the existence of an anti-democratic and fascistic mindset, strategy and policy bearing enmity towards the Kurds. The Turkish state and authorities who say nothing against the activity of ISIS and Al Nusra in Syria voice objection against the effectiveness and self-ruling of PYD in Kurdish areas.

They wouldn't now recognize the KDP either if it didn't fight the PKK. They are now calling KDP a friend of theirs because of their need for a fight against PKK. They are now having talks with the KDP but we didn't forget about the past. Yet in 2007-2008, Yaşar Büyükanıt and İlker Başbuğ refused to have talks with the KDP whom they described as 'clan leaders'.


A democratic change and transformation cannot take place unless they are realized in the present mindset, strategy and politics. As the most democratic force in Turkey, we are giving a major fight for democracy for 35 years now, and we will continue doing the same in the future as well, until the domination of democracy over Turkey. We have made great self-sacrifices, lost our fighters and waged a struggle under most challenging circumstances.

Everyone should answer the question what will happen when we declare a ceasefire. Will there be a democratic ruling? Will the peoples, Kurds in the first place, be able to get organized with their own identities? Will women be free? Will the society develop local democratic administrations? Will the dictatorship of the AKP-appointed governors on local administrations end? We want to see and understand this. All these points are the causes of the present conflict. Those wanting an end to this conflict should rather focus on these issues and seek a solution on this basis. There can be no solution unless these causes are eliminated.


What should the democratic forces and peoples do in the face of ongoing attacks by AKP?

AKP had already decided to attack yet before the elections. They just put this decision into practice after failing to accept the election results and the developments in Rojava. Yet, everyone should know that AKP, which is attacking so heavily with the anger over these developments, has no power to remain standing. The government wants to come back to the power by means of arms, military and police forces, and it wants to succeed this over Kurds.

In the face of the total warfare concept put into effect, the only solution is all-out resistance. The peoples and Turkey's society should resist this fascist attack which targets Leader Apo, guerrillas, people and democratic politics.


We should reveal our democratic will against those trying to impose their own fascist, chauvinistic and centralist will on us. All the society, democratic forces, NGOs, women and youth should manifest their democratic will in all areas and refuse a ruling by appointed governors. Democracy means self-ruling, which is why the whole society should establish their own local administrations.


This does not mean separatism or splitting the country. This is democracy and Democratic Autonomy which unites people unlike fascism and monist mindset that separates, splits, otherizes and excludes them. Everyone should declare their freedom and reveal a democratic will against the fascistic centralist will and the attacks aiming to break our will.

This is the only existing conflict and the only reason for a conflict. The monist, fascist, chauvinistic and dictatorial will of the AKP needs to be broken by the establishment of democratic local administrations. There is no need to do anything else to achieve this, like press briefings or statements which serve nothing.


The people and society wants a self-ruling within Turkey's Democratic Nation. They are not separatists and they are not engaged in a conflict with the state forces. Yet, they are of course defending themselves in the event of an attack or intervention by the army. However, people should resist the police coming to them for arrest, and not allow any attempt for any arrest. Everyone should defend their neighborhoods, villages and towns. They should manifest their own will and defend themselves. This is what struggle means. A struggle on this basis will reveal a permanent effect and break the monist will of the AKP fascism, and the impositions of the MHP, which will thus eliminate the causes of this war.

Right, guerrillas are playing a role and our Leader is resisting but there is no answer we can give to the AKP fascism other than developing our democratic self-ruling, founding our own assemblies and ruling ourselves on local level. This is what Democratic Autonomy and democratic self-ruling means.

Living one day freely is better than living as slaves under this much repression. They say they will hit and destroy us, and they may do that, which, however, doesn't matter. Kemal Pir did also praise a 'free living' when he started a death fast in prison. His stance should be realized in every neighborhood, village, town and city. Freedom must be declared and defended. This is what needs to be done, and this is the stance that needs to be adopted.