German Left Party appeals for an end to PKK ban

10 German MPs from Left Party are seen posing with a PKK flag in German parliament to protest a decision made by German government to remove the immunity of a fellow left party mp Nicole Gohlke for her action of holding a PKK flag during a rally in Munich.

The ban on the PKK (Kurdistan Worker’s Party) in Germany was announced on 26 November 1993 by the then government of Helmut Kohl. Large segments of the German public think the ban on the PKK must be lifted following the struggle against the ISIS gangs led by the PKK in recent months.

The left and democratic circles insist on the removal of the ban despite several statements by the Foreign Affairs Minister, Steinmeir, saying: “The ban on the PKK will continue as there is not sufficient reason to lift it”.

Last Saturday, the “Bündis Gegen IMK” platform formed by 84 Kurdish, German and Turkish left organisations, held a march in Cologne to demand the removal of the ban.

It is now the conference by the internal affairs ministers of the 16 German states to be held on 11-12 December in Cologne that attracts attention as the issue is also expected to be on the agenda of the conference.

Prior to the conference, The German Left Party [Die Linke], the main opposition party in Bundestag, the national parliament of the Federal Republic of Germany, has filed an application to the Federal Parliament to demand the removal of the ban on the PKK in effect for 21 years now.

Issuing a statement on the appeal, the Die Linke group recalled that Kurdistan is separated into four parts and that the PKK and YPG/YPJ fighters are struggling against the ISIS gangs in West and South Kurdistan. Die Linke also recalled that it was the Internal Affairs Ministry that was run by the CDU in 1993 that imposed the PKK ban, launching a criminalisation of the Kurdish liberation struggle.

Die Linke group underlined that; “The PKK has emerged out of the repression and the bans Turkey imposed on the Kurds. Today, the Kurdish liberation movement pursues a life struggle with local administrations. The Kurdish liberation movement working for the defence of the rights of women and minority groups has been the motor of democratisation in the Middle East.”

Recalling that the Turkish government is negotiating with the PKK in a peace process, the party remarked that the lifting of the ban on the PKK will put pressure on Ankara to undertake real reforms for the advance of the process.

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