Today the presentation of Öcalan’s writings will be held in Milano and on Friday in Bologna.

Today the Italian selection of Le Monde Diplomatique (published with daily paper il manifesto) carries an appeal asking for freedom for the Kurdish leader. The appeal says Öcalan’s freedom is pivotal as it is crucial to enable him to play his role in the search for a solution to the Kurdish question and the achievement of a just and lasting peace. The appeal is signed by hundreds of prominent international figures.

“Nelson Mandela, Gerry Adams, José Ramos-Horta and Aung San Suu Kyi – is read in the appeal – had and have the respect and confidence of their communities and so can convince them to work constructively.

Without doubt Abdullah Öcalan also falls into this category. It is due to him that in the past few years the focus of the Kurdish freedom movement has shifted decisively away from military to political solutions.

From 1993 onwards successive Turkish governments have from time to time approached Öcalan and thus recognized his key role in the search for a solution”.

The appeal adds that “The present Erdogan government maintained negotiations with him for two and a half years, during which time Öcalan proposed a step-by-step plan for achieving peace, from confidence-building measures, to the silencing of arms under international surveillance, to a permanent political solution to the Kurdish question. The negotiations broke off in July 2011, but Öcalan’s proposals, laid out in his “Road Map,” remain of the utmost importance”.

Among the signatories are Gerry Adams (president of Sinn Féin), Dario Fo (Literature Nobel Prize), sociologist Immanuel Wallerstein (who has written the introduction to the Road Map), several former and present European MPs like Luigi Vinci, Ana Miranda, Jean Lambert.

Öcalan is held in the Imrali prison since 1999.

ANF – ITALY 14.03.2014