ANF, Behdinan – 19.4.2013 – Kurdish Communities Union (KCK) Executive Council member Mustafa Karasu spoke to ANF about the withdrawal of Kurdish guerrillas from North to South Kurdistan, to Media Defense Areas. Karasu recalled the withdrawal process of the Kurdish armed movement in 1999 and pointed out the differences with the current process, initiated by Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan’s call in Newroz on 21 March.
Karasu underlined that the withdrawal process is a part of the democratic solution project, adding, “We see the withdrawal as one of the steps to be taken in order to lead a more effective struggle, not as withdrawal from the struggle”. Karasu said the approach towards withdrawal was not different from the approach towards the Kurdish question as a whole.
Referring to the gurrillas’ withdrawal in 1999, Karasu said the followings, “The withdrawal took place under quite severe conditions following the international conspiracy which led to the capture of Öcalan in Kenya. It was a process of total elimination to which our movement was planning to respond strongly. An approach which was not however approved by Öcalan. He believed such a severe conflict would turn into mere retaliation which would affect the future and that this war could deepen the international conspiracy even further. This is why he wanted to give an opportunity to the Turkish state and government to defuse progressively the conspiracy and to encourage them to look at ways to solve the Kurdish question”.
Karasu remarked that hundreds of guerrillas lost their life in this process because of the operations led by the Turkish state which -he underlined- had interpreted the withdrawal for a weakness instead of a step for a solution.
Karasu noted that the Turkish state had a despicable attitude against the withdrawal of Kurdish guerrillas, noting that the guerrillas’ lack of experience, plan and caution also had an influence in the loss of hundreds of fighters. He said the withdrawal was an unilateral step aimed at creating more favorable conditions to the search for a solution.
Karasu noted that the characteristic of the current process is quite different from that of the withdrawal in 1999 in consideration of the experience the guerrilla movement has gained since that time. “The withdrawal in the current process will take place in a period which is witnessing an enhancement in the guerrilla movement and a situation of deadlock for the AKP government. We will take this step because we want to involve the AKP government in the solution process and to achieve a result by means of democratic politics. We see it as a part of creating a more effective struggle and to realize the establishment of democracy in Turkey. This withdrawal should be regarded as a historic and political step necessary for democratic politics”, he said.
Karasu pointed out that the current solution process had three phases, ceasefire, withdrawal, and constitutional amendments, and noted that withdrawal would be a step to be taken to pave the way for democratic politics in Turkey. Karasu said the current debate on withdrawal revealed the approach towards the Kurdish question, adding that this process shouldn’t be considered separatedly from the Kurdish question.