ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan accused Kurdish politicians on Friday of trying to sabotage talks to end a 28-year-old insurrection, lamenting the absence of Turkish flags during a mass rally to mark a ceasefire by Kurdish rebels.
Jailed rebel leader Abdullah Ocalan ordered his fighters to cease fire and withdraw from Turkey in a letter read to hundreds of thousands in the city of Diyarbakir in the mainly Kurdish southeast on Thursday. Kurdish red-yellow-green flags and banners displaying Ocalan’s face dominated the crowd.
By Daren Butler
(Reuters) – Kurdish rebel Abdullah Ocalan was banished to his island prison 14 years ago, narrowly escaping the gallows. Greyer and tempered by long isolation, he now braves the skepticism of many Turks and some of his own fighters to don the mantle of peacemaker.
Ocalan, long reviled in Turkish media as a ‘monster’, ordered his fighters on Thursday to withdraw to the mountains of northern Iraq and cease fighting, his words read to hundreds of thousands of Kurds gathered in the regional center Diyarbakir.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkish government and ruling party offices came under bomb and missile attack overnight in what a deputy prime minister said on Wednesday could be an attempt to wreck a peace process with Kurdish militants.
Early on Wednesday, a small bomb exploded near state offices on the Asian side of Istanbul, damaging windows but resulting in no casualties, while police defused separate explosives in front of a cultural center in the city.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Jailed Kurdish rebel leader Abdullah Ocalan said he would make a “historic” appeal on Thursday, raising expectations of a ceasefire in a 28-year conflict that has riven Turkey, killing some 40,000 people.
His statement, conveyed from his prison cell via a Kurdish politician, may cement peace talks with the government that have been progressing tentatively since October.
ISTANBUL, March 18 (Reuters) – Jailed Kurdish rebel leader
Abdullah Ocalan said he would make a “historic” appeal on
Thursday, raising expectations of ceasefire in a 28-year-old
conflict which has riven Turkey, killing some 40,000 people, and
battered its economy.
Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) leader Selahattin
Demirtas, a member of parliament, conveyed Ocalan’s statement on
his return to Istanbul on Monday from a visit to his prison on
the island of Imrali. A ceasefire could cement talks with the
government that have been progressing tentatively since October.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Kurdish politicians were ferried to a Turkish prison island on Monday where Kurdish rebel leader Abdullah Ocalan is expected to issue a ceasefire call in a conflict that has cost 40,000 lives and battered Turkey’s economy over three decades.
Ocalan, captured by Turkish special forces in Kenya 14 years ago, has been holding talks with the government since late last year. Truces have been agreed and failed before in the war, but this is the first time Ocalan and a Turkish prime minister have openly spoken of talks on a comprehensive settlement.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Jailed Kurdish militant leader Abdullah Ocalan is proposing to withdraw his fighters from Turkey by August if Ankara pushes through reforms under a draft plan to end a 28-year insurgency, media reports said on Wednesday.
Imprisoned on Imrali island near Istanbul since 1999, Ocalan has since October been discussing a deal with Turkey’s government to end a conflict that has killed 40,000 people since his Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) took up arms in 1984.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Jailed Kurdish militant leader Abdullah Ocalan envisages the withdrawal of his fighters from Turkey by August under a draft peace plan sent to his group’s leadership and Kurdish politicians, media reports said on Wednesday.
Held in an island jail since his capture in 1999, Ocalan has been negotiating with Turkey’s government since October over the outlines of a deal to end a conflict which has killed 40,000 people since his fighters took up arms in 1984.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Emerging briefly from solitary confinement in his island prison near Istanbul, Kurdish militant leader Abdullah Ocalan said Turkey could become as troubled as Syria or Iraq if it does not take steps to end his group’s decades-old insurgency.
A paunchy and graying Ocalan, cut off from the world since his capture in 1999, told a delegation of pro-Kurdish MPs visiting him at the weekend of his plans to end a 28-year conflict that has killed 40,000 people.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Jailed Kurdish militant leader Abdullah Ocalan will call a ceasefire at the Kurdish New Year next month, moving forward a peace process with Turkey aimed at ending his group’s 28-year-old insurgency, media reports said on Monday.
Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said a planned withdrawal of Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militants from Turkey after a ceasefire was established would begin the process of ending a conflict which has killed more than 40,000 people.