Kemal Burkay, the former chairman of the Rights and Freedoms Party (HAK-PAR) and Kurdish politician who returned to Turkey in 2011 after being exiled for 31 years, indicated that even Kurds do not understand what the PKK is fighting for, saying "We as Kurds even do not understand; how can Turks?"
"They can carry out this struggle through peaceful means and they have the feasibility to do this. They have the political base. They have the media. Such a movement should make a political struggle. There is no need for armed men in the mountains for this," Burkay said.
He stressed that righteous policies should be followed and said, "The state or the government can make mistakes however we, as Kurds, do not accept that the PKK has the right to make a mistake. We do not have the luxury of making mistakes either since the state has made [mistakes]."
Claiming that the PKK wants to rule the Kurds with an iron fist, Burkay said, "Namely, they say Kurds should rule themselves. Even that is something similar to autonomy. They neither offer a federative system nor autonomy. They can have either but why do they want to achieve it with weapons?" before adding that Kurdish people do not believe the PKK and Peoples' Democratic Party's (HDP) democratic self-determination demands to be true.
Burkay also made a call for the PKK to lay down its arms. "Since 1984, I have found the use of weapons wrong. Today that's my call for the PKK: It should silence the weapons and thus the state can stop the operations in order to return to the non-conflict period."
He also criticized the attitude of the HDP, saying their democratic self-determination demands are empty. "You have more than 100 municipalities and 80 deputies. What else do you need for the democratic solution?"
The reconciliation process, which was introduced by the government and suspended after the killing of two police officers by the PKK, has been supported by Burkay.
"We will continue to express our support in this regard" said Burkay, who stated that the resolution of the Kurdish issue is not only important for Turkey but will also have positive implications for the region.
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