The PKK terrorist group, which has been enjoying tolerance across Europe, this time faces wrath of a political party in Austria. A lawmaker from the New Austria and Liberal Forum (NEOS) has criticized Austrian authorities for allowing the supporters of the PKK to hold an event at a public school in Vienna.
A video from the event that took place on Dec. 8 surfaced on Austrian news websites. The video shows supporters of the terrorist group singing and waving PKK flags in the auditorium of the school, against the backdrop of posters of Abdullah Öcalan, the imprisoned leader of the terrorist group responsible for killing thousands of people in Turkey in the past three decades.
Austria is among the countries that officially recognizes the group as a terrorist organization, like the rest of Europe. Christoph Wiederkehr, a lawmaker for NEOS, wrote on social media that it was unacceptable to tolerate an event used for PKK propaganda at a public school.
Wiederkehr criticized the permission for the event at a time of attacks by the terrorist group in Turkey, citing the deaths of dozens in Istanbul last Saturday in two bombings by the Kurdistan Freedom Falcons (TAK), an affiliate of the PKK.
Turkey was critical of Austria for a June event where the supporters of the terrorist group set up a tent in Vienna for a propaganda stand they adorned with posters of Öcalan and PKK flags for ten days.
The West has been giving open support to several terrorist groups and their supporters, Ankara claims, pointing to the permission granted for pro-PKK rallies in European countries and the lack of a legal process against several wanted PKK figures that took shelter in Europe.
Following Saturday's attacks, social media users have vented anger at the support that the PKK and its affiliates enjoy in Western countries, where they are viewed as freedom fighters despite the clear designation of the militant group as a terrorist organization.
"The European Union and United States condemn terrorism but how sincere they are when they are supplying arms to the terrorist groups?" a social media user tweeted.
Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmuş echoed the public's concerns for support for terrorism. In a televised interview, Kurtulmuş accused the West of "hypocrisy" on terrorism and said they expected those who condemned the Istanbul attacks to support Turkey's fight against terrorism.