Activists from Marseille take over Freedom for Öcalan Vigil

The Freedom for Öcalan Vigil in front of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg has been taken over by a group of activists from Marseille.

The Freedom for Öcalan Vigil began in front of the Council of Europe on 25 June 2012. Since then it has been taken over by a different group of activists every week.

On week 397, the vigil has been taken over by a group of activists from Marseille, Yunus Yıldız, Vahap Binici, Cihan Akçiçek and Halil Kaya, who replaced a group of women from Freiburg.

The Vigil was first organised to demand Freedom for Kurdish People's Leader Abdullah Öcalan and it is held at the intersection of Orangerie-Robertsau districts where institutions such as the Council of Europe, the Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) and the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) are located.

Speaking on behalf of the activists, Vahap Binici emphasized that the Vigil is of historical importance. He added that the isolation on Öcalan means also the isolation of Kurds.

Binici said that the reality of Leadership is the reality of resistance and life of the Kurdish people, and that life without leadership is meaningless.

Underlining that there is a total war against the Kurdish people, Binici added that a Democratic National Congress should be held urgently to counter the invasion attacks.

The Freedom for Öcalan Vigil started on June 25, 2012 to call for an end to the aggravated isolation imposed upon Öcalan and to raise awareness for his freedom. Before the vigil, a Long March was held from Geneva to Strasbourg in February 2012 and a hunger strike of 52 days was held during the months of March and April. Representatives from various institutions in Europe and politicians had participated in the hunger strike.

The Freedom for Öcalan Vigil was launched after these demonstrations, and in the seven years since, hundreds of thousands of flyers, brochures and booklets have been handed out and Öcalan’s ideas have been communicated to people from dozens of countries throughout the world.

More than two thousand activists have taken over the vigil up to date. Artists, politicians, journalists and European allies have taken part in person.