Jailed PKK leader: State wanted me to kill ex-Turkish PM

It is widely believed that the PKK has links with Turkey's deep state.

Jailed PKK leader: State wanted me to kill ex-Turkish PM

World Bulletin / News Desk

Jailed leader of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) Abdullah Öcalan said someone from the state wanted the PKK to kill former Prime Minister Tansu Çiller but that he refused to do so, according to a recent book by journalist Cengiz Kapmaz titled “Öcalan'ın İmralı'daki Günleri” (Öcalan's Days in İmralı).

“I don't remember whether I related this before or not. In 1996, someone from the state wanted us [the PKK] to kill Çiller. They told me that they were going to prepare the necessary conditions and that we would just kill her. But I did not accept that. We have been against such conspiracy attempts from the very beginning,” Öcalan was quoted as saying by Kapmaz in the book. Öcalan reportedly made these remarks in 2007 to his lawyers.

Öcalan, captured in 1999 in Nairobi, was initially sentenced to death but his sentence was commuted to life imprisonment when the death penalty was abolished in Turkey in August 2002. He has been serving a life sentence on İmralı Island in the Marmara Sea since his capture.

It is widely believed that the PKK has links with Turkey's deep state. The prosecution in the case against Ergenekon -- a clandestine criminal network nested within the state, bureaucracy and military -- highlights various instances of collaboration and cooperation between Ergenekon and the PKK in the three indictments submitted thus far in the case. Hüseyin Yıldırım, the former right-hand man of Öcalan, recently said in an interview that the Ergenekon terrorist organization, an instrument of the deep state, is behind the conflict between Turks and Kurds in Turkey and that Öcalan is also under the control of the deep state.

Turkey has fought the PKK since 1984 when it was set up with the goal of establishing an autonomous Kurdish state in the eastern and southeastern parts of Turkey. More than 40,000 soldiers and civilians have been killed in clashes thus far.

Kapmaz's book is made up of accounts of Öcalan to his lawyers since his capture. The 500-page-long book has eight sections.

According to the book, Öcalan was interrogated by a special team for 10 days after he was brought to İmralı Prison. The team included high-ranking officials from the National Intelligence Organization (MİT), the Gendarmerie General Command and National Police Department as well as retired Col. Atilla Uğur, who represented then-Chief of General Staff Gen. Hüseyin Kıvrıkoğlu.

The book also says that Öcalan wrote many letters to top state officials including former President Ahmet Necdet Sezer, former Parliament Speaker and current Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and current President Abdullah Gül from prison. According to the book, Öcalan sent three letters to Erdoğan.

The journalist also argues in the book that some military commanders told Öcalan in 2000 to step up the militant group's fight against Turkish soldiers. According to the journalist, a few military commanders paid a visit to Öcalan in his cell in 2000. They reportedly told Öcalan that no one would take him seriously if the PKK continued its fight in small conflicts.

Last Mod: 25 Ocak 2011, 16:31
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