Thousands celebrate the 45th founding anniversary of the PKK in Lucerne

Thousands of people in Lucerne celebrated the 45th anniversary of the establishment of the PKK on 27 November 1978.

Thousands of people celebrated the founding of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in Lucerne. Participants came together from all over Switzerland at the Messe Luzern event location on Saturday to celebrate 45 years of resistance. The event was also a central expression of support for the international campaign launched on 10 October for the freedom of Abdullah Öcalan and a political solution to the Kurdish question.

The keynote speaker at the event was the Kurdish politician Fuat Kav, who was committed to the rights of Kurds in Turkey even before the PKK was founded on 27 November 1978 and spent twenty years in Turkish prisons after the military coup of 1980, eight of which were spent in the notorious prison of Diyarbakır, the "hell of Amed". He took part in the resistance and experienced unbelievable forms of cruelty there. He expressed his experiences in the novel "Mavi Ring", published in 2011. In his speech, the political activist, journalist and author described the PKK as a "never-ending novel" and the symbol of the Kurdish people's resistance:

"The founding of the PKK has left its mark on Kurdistan and Turkey and even on world history. Today, the peoples of the Middle East and the world know that the PKK has become a force whose will cannot be broken, and which cannot be ignored. This fact is known to friend and foe."

Remarking that the PKK prevented the annihilation of the Kurdish people, Fuat Kav continued: "If it hadn't been for the PKK's struggle, nobody would be talking about the existence of the Kurdish people today. The PKK and Leader Apo [Abdullah Öcalan] have made the Kurds a globally recognised force. Today, the PKK can no longer be excluded from the political equation."

In his speech, Kav also referred to the total isolation of PKK founder Abdullah Öcalan in Turkish custody and emphasised that the Kurdish leader must be released in order to facilitate a political solution. He called for participation in the campaign and said: "We will break the isolation and free Leader Apo."

Other speakers also emphasised the importance of the PKK in the struggle for dignity and freedom. The cultural programme included performances by the dance group Govenda Swisre, a women's choir from Basel and the musicians Kawa Urmiye, Şiyar û Dijwar, Ali Jiyan, Zozan Zudem and Farqin Azad. People danced until late in the evening.