Sign-on statement

Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan

Between 2013 and 2015, a staggering 10.3 million people worldwide signed the following statement:

I support the demand Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan and the political prisoners in Turkey. Öcalan’s freedom will mark a breakthrough for the democratization of Turkey and peace in Kurdistan.

More than five years later, this is still true.

In 2015, after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan ended several years of talks between the Turkish state, Abdullah Öcalan and the PKK, he launched a new stage of aggressive and violent escalation in Turkey, Iraq and Syria. In recent months Erdogan waged war not only against the Kurds but all the neighbours of Turkey including Libya, Cyprus, the border with Greece and Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh.

Meanwhile, the people of North and East Syria, inspired by Öcalan and his prison writings, have transformed their land into a major bastion of peaceful coexistence and democracy despite Turkey’s constant and ongoing military attacks.

Öcalan’s ongoing incarceration and the inhumane isolation to which he remains subjected, the massive repression inside the Kurdish regions of Turkey and the attacks on North and East Syria are all aspects of the same overall approach taken by the Turkish state: to attack the forces of democracy and especially the Kurds by all means possible.

Unfortunately, international institutions have refrained from providing an adequate response to this deteriorating situation and the Council of Europe along with the European Court for Human Rights and the Committee against Torture (CPT) have all failed to guarantee even the most basic human rights for Abdullah Öcalan on Imrali Island.

Abdullah Öcalan is the most important symbol of the struggle against the repression of freedom and democracy in Turkey and the wider Middle East. His firm stand for peaceful coexistence, his relentless efforts for a peaceful resolution of the conflict between the Kurds and the Turkish state have proven to be effective. This makes his freedom ever more important for all peace-loving people.

This is why we say: The time has come — Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan!

A new website has been established for the Freedom for Öcalan campaign. To endorse this statement and to view the list of current endorsements please go to the website