PKK commemorates great guerrilla commander Fazil Botan

The PKK commemorates the revolutionary Fazil Botan, who died last year in France, who had a decisive influence on the guerrilla struggle in Kurdistan for three decades and fought against ISIS in Rojava.

The Central Committee of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) announced the death of Kurdish revolutionary Fazil Botan in France on 15 June 2022. Botan had been active in the Kurdish liberation movement since 1988. Among other things, he was a member of the military council of the People's Defence Forces (HPG) and fought against Islamist terror in Rojava. In 2015, he was seriously injured in an accident and went to Europe in a roundabout way for medical treatment, where he died last year as a result of his injury.

In its obituary on Tuesday, the PKK paid tribute to Fazil Botan, defining him as one of the great heroes of the liberation struggle who played a great role in the development of the guerrillas as a legendary commander. "Our comrade Fazil Botan brought about great developments since he joined the party and fought almost on every inch of ground in Kurdistan. He was one of the exquisite commanders who dealt heavy blows to the enemy with their great guerrilla tactics. In order to end the oppression of the Kurdish people and the other peoples in the Middle East, Fazil Botan fought a breathless battle for decades. This was made possible by his deep attachment to his country, his sense of responsibility towards his people, his passionate desire for freedom and the patriotic consciousness typical of his home region of Botan.”

"He experienced the cruel oppression by the enemy in Botan at a young age and grew up in the face of brutal colonialist measures. Even as a child, he felt anger and deep hatred towards the enemy. These patriotic feelings were later complemented by Apoist ideology and Fazil Botan thus became a great commander. He was unreservedly convinced that Rêber Apo (Leader Abdullah Öcalan) will save the Kurdish people from genocidal policies. Accordingly, he recreated himself in every period. Wherever he went to accomplish a task, he returned from there with unconditional success. He devoted his life to the guerrilla army with a sacrificial spirit. With his actions, practical attitude and ethical-political attitude, he was an exemplary revolutionary and Apoist PKK militant who was a model of willpower and courage among his comrades."

According to the PKK Central Committee, Fazil Botan was born in 1968 in the foothills of Mount Cudi and belonged to the Gête tribe. In 1988, he joined the guerrilla ranks in Botan. After only two years, he assumed great responsibility. In the early 1990s, he fought in Gabar and contributed to the creation of mobile battalions, which he commanded, and which were a nightmare for the Turkish army. In 1993, he came to the central party school for training, where he met Abdullah Öcalan and experienced a striking personality development. From 1994, he was in the command of the mobile battalion in Besta together with Sakine Cansiz (Sara) and Emine Kara (Evîn Goyî). In 1997, he came to the party academy one more time. From 1998, he was commander in the Kato Jîrka and Çatak areas. During the time of the guerrilla retreat from Turkish territory, he stayed in Botan for a while and was commander in Qandil and Xakurke after 2000. In the guerrilla offensive of 1 June 2004, he took over the strategic task of the Botan command. In 2008, he was the front commander in Zap and played an essential role in the fatal defeat of the Turkish army, whose occupation attempt was beaten back devastatingly within nine days. He contributed significantly to the emergence of the self-defence strategy, the development of modern guerrilla tactics and the construction of tunnels. His role in the creation and protection of the Medya Defence Zones was formative. He was part of the headquarters leadership and a member of the HPG Military Council. Later, he assumed duties in the Qandil Regional Command.

When the Islamist attacks on the Rojava revolution began in 2012, he fought there on the front lines. In 2015, he suffered serious injuries in an accident during the Newroz celebrations and went to Europe for treatment. On 15 June 2022, he joined the Caravan of Martyrs.