Originally published: https://anfenglishmobile.com/kurdistan/karayilan-this-is-a-matter-of-life-and-death-every-kurd-must-do-their-part-59478

Karayılan stated that the current conflict is a matter of life and death for the Kurdish people; “This is an extraordinary time, and every Kurdish person should take risks and do whatever they can. We will pay whatever the cost is to beat this evil.”

Karayılan remarked that they are only at the start of a historical struggle to be witnessed and stated, “The path of our people’s existence, the path of their future, the path of our people’s independence all pass through here. We will provide it at any cost. We believe in ourselves, and we will defeat this enemy.”

Karayılan urged the people of Southern Kurdistan, in particular, not to abandon them in this process, as they had done in 2008, and urged all Kurds to “take risks and do whatever they can.”

Karayılan, a member of the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) Executive Committee, responded to ANF’s questions about the Turkish state’s offensive on the Medya Defense Zones, which began on April 17, and the KDP’s cooperation.

The Turkish state launched a full attack on the Medya Defense Zones on the night of April 17th. What is the goal of this attack?

First of all, it should be noted that this attack is not an ordinary one. Since 2016, the Turkish state has been acting according to a new concept, based on a certain strategy. The aim of this strategy is that Turkey, in order to stop the struggle for freedom in Kurdistan, must not shrink but expand. In this context, the state aimed to bring the areas within the borders of Misak-i Milli [Ottoman National Pact, which goes far beyond today’s Turkey] under its control in the military, political, economic sense. At the same time, Iraq and Syria are not to be occupied directly, but brought under a kind of patronage. In this way, a neo-Ottoman program is to be implemented and Turkey is to be made the largest state in the region. This is the core of the concept. On this basis, the Turkish state has been fighting us for a long time. It is attacking the Kurdish people not only on a military level, but also on a political, social and cultural level. A torture regime was installed against Rêber Apo [Abdullah Öcalan], which does not exist in this form anywhere in the world. The Turkish state has established a permanent state of emergency in order to destroy us.

As is known, in 2021, the Turkish state aimed to occupy the areas where the guerrillas are located in Southern Kurdistan, the Medya Defense Zones. So Gare was attacked surprisingly, while there was still snow. As is known, the Turkish army suffered a defeat there. Then there were extensive attacks on Zap, Avaşîn and Metîna. The areas were to be occupied in order to advance from there to Gare and Qandil. This was supposed to happen within three months, but this plan did not work out. It was a defeat for the Turkish army. A few hills were taken in some areas, but the guerrillas put up great resistance and the Turkish army was defeated another time.

“They cannot digest the defeat of 2021”

We knew that the Turkish state would not digest this so easily. The fascist AKP/MHP regime must implement its strategy. It made that its central task. But the regime did not succeed and therefore it is heading towards collapse. Every day it is getting weaker. The government now has one more year to go and its existence is tied to the success of its strategy. That is why it has launched an even more comprehensive attack.

Of course, we knew about it. We are always watching the enemy. New forces were trained, soldiers were trained, and regional powers were prepared diplomatically and politically. International support was also provided so that no one would oppose it. In short, the Turkish state has made clandestine preparations in a broad framework, both diplomatically and militarily. It was within this framework that the April 17 attacks began.

“Not an operation, but a major war”

It would be more correct to say that the attack began on April 14. This is because air raids took place for three days before April 17. In military literature, this is called “softening up”. For this purpose, air raids were carried out. Then, on the night of April 17-18, they attacked from the ground from the south and north. Airdropping operations were conducted to launch a full-scale invasion attack. This is not an operation, but a major war. No state fights another so easily. Even in Ukraine, I don’t think there are such fronts that there could be the development of such a permanent war. It is a big war. The Turkish state has used its technology and chemical weapons before, but right now we see that it is putting even more emphasis on technology. You can see helicopters, fighter jets, reconnaissance planes flying at the same time, while ground attacks are taking place and howitzers are fired from the border outposts. In short, it is aimed at a permanent bombardment and an absolute occupation.

“It’s going to get more intense”

But even the areas under attack are not just any areas. Zap and Avaşîn are sites of historic resistance. Our people and everyone should know that the war will get worse. The army has practically unlimited recourse to technology and wants to achieve results in this way. But our friends have enough experience. Especially in the past year, important experience has been gained in attacking the enemy from underground positions and in the field and protecting themselves. This war will be of historic proportions.

We are at the beginning. We have written to the friends and congratulated them. The first days are very important in such processes. The friends have already been successful in these first days, for that we have congratulated them. Of course, the enemy is waging a special war. So he claims that he took so many places, and only one captain died. But this does not correspond to reality. The enemy obviously puts the greatest emphasis on technology and propaganda in this war. He wants to deceive the public by hiding the truth and manipulating the perception in Turkish society. For the fascist regime, it is an important war. It is about survival. If Erdoğan and Bahçeli lose this war, they will not only lose but also end up in prison. They are involved in corruption and so many crimes that they will not be spared from prosecution. That is why they have mobilized all of Turkey’s resources. They have taken risks and done everything domestically and internationally to succeed. They continue to do so.

“A war of strategic importance for the Kurdish people”

This war is not only a war between the PKK and the Turkish state. To claim such a thing is a big mistake. This war is being waged on the basis of a strategy. It is true that the first target of this strategy is the PKK, but the PKK is not the only target. There are other targets. The aim is to destroy all the achievements of the Kurdish people. After that, the AKP/MHP regime will be able to exert more influence on the Arab people and get them under control. As a result, the region will be dominated by Turkey. The Turkish state will not only take the mountains of Kurdistan, but also Hewlêr (Erbil) and Baghdad under its influence. Yes, the PKK is certainly the first target, but it is just about all the achievements of the Kurdish people. Therefore, the war has a strategic meaning for the Kurdish people. It is a matter of being or not being for the Kurdish people.

“It is a matter of life and death”

Turkey’s wealth has been consumed in the war. Most of the income goes to this war. Why are the people of Turkey starving today? Turkey is a rich country, but all the income has been secretly and openly diverted to the war. Now the rulers will be told, “You spent so much money on the war and still couldn’t win.” Investigation proceedings will be launched. Therefore, in order to continue their rule and strengthen the hegemony of fascism in Kurdistan, the fascists Erdoğan and Bahçeli must succeed against us. This is very important for them. It is even more important for us. It is a matter of life and death. It is important for our people, for the Arab people, for the people in the region. Turkey is pursuing neo-Ottoman dreams and not listening to anyone. This is not a secret plan. Every day they openly say about Kirkuk, “This was actually ours, but they took it from us.” The Turkish state has such intentions, otherwise what would the soldiers in Bashiqa be doing? Why are so many preparations being made regarding Kirkuk? It is clear that if this strategy holds, the Kurdish status will be destroyed. Because the KDP likes it, it is called the “Kurdish leadership.” What is it leading? The terms “Kurdish government of northern Iraq” or “prime minister of the Kurds in northern Iraq” are used. The Turkish state does not recognize Kurds at home or abroad. It does not recognize Kurdistan in any way. This is the truth. The Turkish state has organized itself on the basis of this concept and is waging war on this basis.

Our people should know, we consider this phase as an exceptional situation. It is the time of mobilization. Accordingly, everyone must do what they can. We are in a very important and critical phase. It is extremely delicate. We must break this wave of attack by the enemy. If we succeed, a new era will begin in Kurdistan, Turkey and the region, a solution will develop, freedom and democracy will develop. In this sense, this is a resistance for democracy and freedom, it is the resistance of the Kurdish people for their existence, it is the resistance of the Kurdish people for freedom, it is the resistance of the peoples of the region for democracy.

What is the KDP’s role in these attacks? How strong is the KDP’s involvement in the war?

This is an important point. Already last year, the KDP supported Turkey’s strategy. They cooperated with each other. In what form did this cooperation take place? The KDP surrounded the guerrilla areas and imposed an embargo. On the other hand, it provided intelligence to Turkey. The KDP cooperated with the intelligence services; in addition, it laid ambushes for the guerrillas. In Xelîfan, it attacked the guerrillas twice. Fighters were killed in the process. That was the nature of the collaboration last year. Apparently, Turkey was not satisfied with this, so talks were held with KDP representatives at the highest level. It seems that this year, the KDP has gone a step further in the latest attacks.

“A dangerous situation for the KDP”

We are not saying this to discredit the KDP. The KDP leaders do not say it openly, but this is the reality. The Turkish state confirms this after every meeting with them. For example, there was a meeting with Hulusi Akar [Turkey’s defense minister] in Munich. Afterwards, Akar said that they agreed on all issues and on the PKK, that there was a partnership. Erdoğan also said the same thing several times. Shortly before the last meeting in Istanbul, the air strikes started, and then the ground attack began. All this is not a secret. We don’t want the KDP to enter into a relationship that is against us and hostile to Kurds. I don’t know how this will end. So far, they have not gone into battle against the guerrillas, but since yesterday, forces have been massed. There are troop deployments to areas like Dêrelûk and Şîladizê. We don’t know if this will start a new stage. We have no information about that. The situation is dangerous, of course. We have really taken many initiatives so that there will not be a direct skirmish and not a “Kurds against Kurds” war. I personally have been very committed to this, and our entire management has done so. We always wanted to prevent it, and that’s what we want now.

“Kurds against Kurds” is a project of the Turkish state

When there were casualties in an attack in Khanasor, Shengal in 2017, we were under pressure to counterattack. Our leadership stopped that. If it had been up to our friends there, they would have launched an all-out counterattack. In the fall of 2020, KDP troops were deployed to Zêbarî. There were units of ours at the hills there. It was foreseeable that there would be a battle, they also opened fire here and there, but we withdrew our forces from there. It is also public knowledge that troops were sent to the Metîna Mountains on June 5 last year with the intention of war. There was contact and a short clash. They did not station their troops on these hills and we withdrew our own forces. And why? So that there is no war in which Kurds fight Kurds. Nobody would benefit from that, nobody would win. It is a project of the Turkish state.

The Turkish state wants to turn this war into an intra-Kurdish war and thus successfully implement its project. We do not want that. However, there are limits. That is why our people, together with their politicians, intellectuals and artists, must face up to this responsibility. We cannot go on like this. We are ready to sacrifice and we fear no one. We do not want a war to develop among Kurds. This is the situation.

Do you have relations with the KDP? If so, at what level?

Last fall, the Turkish state suffered a defeat in Avaşîn because of our great resistance. Turkey is not a small state. It has weapons technology and uses chemical weapons, but it still did not succeed. I frankly hoped that Kek Mesûd [Barzanî] would change his mind. That is why I wrote him a letter. He answered, and I thank him for that. However, his answer did not contain a solution. For us, a solution is important, and it did not appear in it.

From today’s perspective, they [the KDP] have taken another step forward in their cooperation with the Turkish state. For example, they have allowed the Turkish troops stationed on Southern Kurdish soil to leave their locations and attack our forces. Because the Turkish state could not airdrop troops on the first day, units from its Sirê base near Şîladizê have been put into motion. Similarly, there have been troop transports by helicopter from Bamernê. This shows that cooperation has progressed. It is taking place with the permission of the KDP. In the past, forces stationed in Southern Kurdistan gathered intelligence for their state, but they were not operational forces actively intervening. I believe there was an agreement that these forces would not move without permission. Now that they have started moving, there appears to be such authorization. This issue is important to us. If the guerrillas are besieged in both the south and the north, it creates a favorable opportunity for the Turkish state. Moving troops out of the Sirê base in the south makes it more likely that it will achieve results in its attack. In this way, the guerrillas are meant to be encircled from all sides. We would not have thought that such a thing would be possible. However, it is the answer that has been given in practice.

Turkey will not withdraw from where it entered

We say that the Turkish state is pursuing an anti-Kurdish strategy. The KDP must not support this and must not cooperate with this strategy. We do not know what interests it is pursuing. This increases the danger for the Kurdish future. The Turkish state wants to establish itself in strategic places in Kurdistan. If it enters somewhere, it doesn’t leave again; this is openly stated in its media. It spends millions on road construction, so no one will be able to make it leave again. So why does the KDP behave this way? It may be said that the Turkish state is coming for the PKK. I say to this: Do not support it, then we will see if it can come.

There was such a debate last year as well. We said that the enemy cannot occupy the Zap, Metîna and Avaşîn line. In practice, we have stuck to this. This is not cheap propaganda, I have the reality in mind. We can prevail against this enemy. In short, the KDP must stop backing this racist strategy of Turkey. The strategy of the Turkish state is directed against all Kurds.

The KDP is sawing off the branch on which it is sitting

The PKK is a guarantee for the Federation of Southern Kurdistan. Without the PKK, the Turkish state would not give anything to it. If the PKK had not existed, the Republic of Turkey would not hold talks with Kurdish representatives. It never did. Now the PKK exists and it is a danger to them. Out of fear of the PKK, it talks to everybody. You have to keep that in mind. If the KDP continues to provide support and the PKK is weakened as a result, we will see if the KDP is still considered in any way. We know very well that this will not be the case. We are all on the line, and because the PKK is dangerous to the Turkish state, it is at the forefront. The PKK is meant to be crushed, and then everyone else will have their turn. The Turkish state is against a Kurdish status. Two months ago, Hulusi Akar openly said in parliament that there is no place called Kurdistan in Turkey or outside it. To this end, the Turkish state is waging war and has developed a strategy to this end.

There is a joke in Turkey about Hodja Nasreddin, who saws off the branch he is sitting on and falls to the ground. The KDP is in the same situation. It wants to cut down the tree of life and this will also harm it. That is the truth. We want the KDP to get out of this situation. What initiatives are necessary for that, I don’t know. Başûr and Rojava must realize what dangers await them. Kurdish politicians must also see the danger and act on it.

How do you assess the attitude of the people in southern Kurdistan?

The people in the south have paid a high price; they have lived through Anfal [Under the name “Anfal”, the Iraqi Baath regime carried out genocidal measures in Southern Kurdistan in eight phases between 1986 and 1989, which left 182,000 people dead]. It was only recently the anniversary. Countless massacres and genocides have been committed against this people. It is a patriotic people and looks back on numerous victims. In this respect, we have great respect for the people of Southern Kurdistan. An example is the operation in Zap 2008, when the Turkish state wanted to advance from Bamernê and Amêdî. But the people there opposed the tanks and did not allow the guerrillas to be surrounded. So the people in the south were involved in that victory in the Zap. What happened then? The Turkish state was defeated. It was the time when relations with Southern Kurdistan were a red line until then. They [the Turkish state] were forced to reverse that line. A year after that, relations were established. Without the victory in Zap 2008, these relations might not have been established at all. Once again, it was the people of Şîladizê who marched heroically and stormed and burned down its base in protest against the Turkish state. It did so with courage and the spirit of serhildan (Kr: uprising). Especially in the current phase, it is essential that the people of Southern Kurdistan stand up consistently and of their own will in the face of the Turkish occupation. Now is the moment of such a situation against Turkey.

In summary, the people’s attitude is positive. As far as we can see, everyone opposes Turkey’s occupation attack – except the KDP. But the political architecture in South Kurdistan is not only represented by the KDP. And as far as we can tell, all other forces are against the current situation. Everything is obvious, nothing remains hidden; there are no interests for the Kurdish people. The Turkish state is walking on the basis of Turanism. The chauvinist and nationalist wing is particularly strong. Who is Bahçeli? He is the enemy of the Kurdish people. Hulusi [Akar], who is waging this war one on one, is distinguished by a single characteristic: hostility towards the Kurdish people! It seems absolutely incomprehensible how it can be possible to enter into relations with such people. Personally, I find it hard to comprehend. How can it happen that Kurds become collaborators? The Turkish state has destroyed everyone in its history who has made pacts with it. Let’s take Dersim as an example. It was not all tribes who took up arms [in resisting the 1937-1938 genocide]. Only five tribal confederations fought. All the others had made themselves comfortable in collaboration with the state. But when resistance was broken, all of Dersim was subjected to genocide. The same is true for the Serhed region. This is the method of this state; its past bears witness to a genocidal history. Man should not go down the wrong path and rather not associate with them [the Turkish state]. Above all, people should not go against each other in wrong things. We are not against relations of the government in South Kurdistan or the KDP with Turkey and we were not. What were we against? Against selfish interests to the detriment of the Kurds. An operation is being conducted here against the Kurdish people. They [the KDP] call it an operation. In reality, it is a war in which [the KDP] is participating.

I think that the people of South Kurdistan are aware of this. Therefore, I say it again: stay connected to us. Show solidarity at every opportunity and in all possible ways. Among the people in Behdînan as well as in Soran, patriotic values have deeply engraved themselves in the self-image. We ourselves are witnesses; we know the people. I have been in Behdînan for years and was in Qandil for years before that. I know the people very well. Its truth is sincere and absolute. We are convinced that it is against the present situation without exception.

We want two things

Media close to the KDP keep bringing it up; “residents are fleeing their villages” and “villagers are suffering”. This is true, we are aware of this fact. So far there are more than thirty dead. They are our martyrs. But one should also be aware: only in Zap have the villages of Rêkan and Nêrwe been evacuated. The villages in Sinunê have not been rebuilt, nor have those around Duhok. In each village there is just one house, if any. The answer to the question of why lies in questioning one’s own politics. The war is not the only reason why residents do not rebuild their villages. War is a cause, that’s true. But there is a general problem. Another is that the Turkish state is attacking. We must adopt a like-minded attitude toward this common enemy. Then it will be possible to resist. Then external and international powers will show a reaction. For as long as a sovereign Kurdish power condones these attacks, these barbaric acts will appear to be a matter of habit. In view of this, we are satisfied with the people’s attitude. We have hope. As I have already formulated, our society should see itself as responsible. This phase must not transform into an inner-Kurdish war. Everyone must stand up against it. In particular, the peshmerga, which can look back on arduous efforts in this regard, and the KDP’s henchmen should recognize the course of events. I have a call to them, and I have hope. Everyone should evaluate their environment and take a stance. Because things are going in a gloomy direction. What do we want? There are two things:

-The war should not develop into a conflict of Kurds against Kurds.

The KDP should end its anti-Kurdish cooperation with the Turkish state. It should give up this policy.

These are our wishes. And these should also be the ideals of all patriotic Kurds. That is all I have to say in this context.

We want to defend the values of this people

You have spoken of your expectations of the people of Southern Kurdistan. What do you generally expect from the public in Kurdistan and from the friends of the Kurdish people?

We are waging a legitimate struggle. For years we have been in Zap. Now the Turkish occupation is coming forward to settle here permanently. In this way, it is trying to establish itself as the dominant force. And this is what we are resisting. It is not an ordinary struggle. We are giving our lives. Bombs are exploding every minute. There are air and ground attacks. We are at war with this enemy. Every person with a little conscience should give us his support. The enemy has tanks and cannons, helicopters, reconnaissance planes, all kinds of technology and weapons with which he attacks us. He has come up with tens of thousands of soldiers, the mutual troop strength does not move on the same level. He is attacking us and we want to defend ourselves. But it is not only about self-defense; we want to protect the values of this nation.

The attacks against us are not limited to Zap. The biggest attack is currently against our chairman in Imrali. He has been subjected to torture for 23 years. Ten thousand friends are in the dungeons, some of them lost their lives there. We are suffering great oppression, our people are suffering great oppression. It is this enemy that we are fighting back. We rightly say that solidarity should be with us, not with the enemy. Are we fighting for personal gain? We are not fighting for money or other material possessions. I have lived a whole life, but except for my weapon I have nothing in my personal possession. Rêber Apo is 73 years old, but he does not have anything personal. Let’s look at the young Kurdish men and women here who are leaving their universities to join the resistance in Zap. Is this not a source of pride for humanity? Because it shows morals and values. People should give support. And if this is not possible, at least one should not help the enemy. To sum up, we have legitimate expectations. That is the answer to your question.

We sacrifice ourselves for the South

For whom and for what are we fighting? We fight for this people and their future. For this, we give casualties every day. If it were not for the great cause, the struggle for the existence and liberation of our people, the struggle for freedom and democracy of the region, then we would pack our bags and leave. But our guiding principle in the current situation is to show a strong will against the enemy and fight. Even if we give our lives, we will not bow down. We must not give up the ground, otherwise our holy land will be occupied. We give our lives for South Kurdistan. It must be clear to all that South Kurdistan will face the greatest danger if the enemy succeeds in its offensive.

If not support, then at least objectivity

Once again, I invite everyone to consider the question of why Kurdish youth, young women and men, are resisting in these mountains. In whose interest are they resisting? Who are they standing up for? They are fighting for the people, democracy and freedom. What else could be the answer? Man must have one hundred percent faith, otherwise he could not withstand 24 minutes – let alone 24 hours – [in the mountains]. Here you go, let them come and try. The Kurojahro is directly across from the urban space. It is easy to get an overview of life there. Also about how it is in Şikefta Birîndara. It is first and foremost a matter of conscience: there is an unequal war going on. While one side is fighting only with its guns and bombs, the other side is resorting to a very wide range of technology and aircraft. This side uses all kinds of weapons and poisons. Assistance should be given to those who fight with guns and bombs. If assistance is denied, at least there should be objectivity. We want the KDP forces to be neutral. They should not take sides, but at least observe our actions. It is not acceptable that they block our way here and there. After all, we did not fall from the sky, we have been here for years. There were agreements between us made in 1982 and 1995. We have shared our bread, visited each other, so much has happened. Now the enemy is facing us. That’s when we should look at what we’re doing.

We will defeat this enemy

We, at least, believe in ourselves. We will defeat this enemy. In our own way and with our intellect and belief in the ideology of Rêber Apo, we will resist and win! The achievement we have brought forth in the past year through our tactics and deepening is the badge of our victory. We can win. The enemy may have as many weapons, technology and soldiers. We have confidence in ourselves. And we want to fight. We don’t want to leave Zap. We want to defeat the enemy. That is our ambition! We are not children. This thing, politics, has been on our minds for years. We are not ignorant, we have read tons of books. Nobody has lost his mind. We know that the way of our people’s existence, the way of their future, the way of our people’s freedom runs here. It doesn’t matter what the price may be – we are ready to pay it. If necessary, we will give our lives. It is with this love and faith that we are fighting this war. Because we are right.

No to inner-Kurdish war

To those who represent the conscience of this people; we appeal to artists, intellectuals and real politicians, to all people in Kurdistan: support us. Do not let the war become an internal Kurdish conflict, stop it. We are in a historic phase. We believe in ourselves and we say that we will win this struggle.

With iron will and great courage, we as Kurdish women and men are fighting in these mountains against the barbaric enemy. Just now we sent a message of congratulations. In these two days, the friends have already written a heroic poem. It is not an easy thing, it is something new in Kurdistan. Both the ways to reach the goal and the attitude of will and faith are new in this warfare. There were sacrificers. This country has sacrificers, so it will win. No power, tank or cannon can break this will. That is why we say; the intellectuals of this country, the artists, the politicians and all the patriots of this country! We know that they are on the streets every day in Europe. I salute them. Our people are in action in all parts of Kurdistan, they are on a quest. I greet them all. But we should know that this is an extraordinary time and everyone should do what they can. I am not saying that they should rebel to a specific side. I am saying stand up and move so that the Kurd does not shoot at the Kurd. Strengthen each other. Now, at this time, our people must adopt the right attitude. Only in this way can it prevent a fatal outcome. Kurdish intellectuals and artists should get to work, be present and take the initiative. They should prevent wrong situations from arising. This is our appeal to everyone. No one should be silent in the face of this historical phase; everyone should take responsibility for themselves, according to their local conditions, and believe in us. Because we keep our promise. We may not be able to do everything, but there are things we can do. And we are absolutely determined on this issue. We will give the necessary answer to the enemy.

Iraq is encouraged for attacks by Turkey

According to the latest news, there are currently attacks by the Iraqi army on security forces in Şengal – there are said to be heavy clashes. How should this situation be assessed? For what reason is Iraq attacking in the current situation in Şengal?

We also follow the events only through the media. Now and then there are times when it is not possible to follow the press closely. But in this matter, we were able to get a picture of the situation. It is quite astonishing that the Iraqi state in Şengal is acting like Turkey’s foot troops. The Yazidi people have endured 74 waves of genocidal persecution so far. Yet they have been left to their fate. [In the last genocide by ISIS on August 3, 2014] even Iraqi troops were on the scene, but they too abandoned the Yazidis. Now that the faith of these people in the Iraqi forces has weakened and they want to build their own security structures, they are being targeted. This is met with incomprehension. It is obvious that all this is happening with the support of the Turkish state.

Let’s take the construction of the wall [between Şengal and Rojava]. Who is it being built against? Where does it run? It is hard to ignore the wrong behavior of the Iraqi state in this context. Especially since the tenure of Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi, the Iraqi government has been incompetent in representing the Iraqi nation, the Arab people. Before al-Kadhimi, Iraq’s official announcement to the Turkish state was that Başîqa must be cleared, just to give one example. The Turkish state ignored this demand. Instead of clearing the base, it increased the number of troops. You know it yourself, the Turkish state killed two Iraqi commanders [in 2020]. The vehicle of our forces moved forward, but the targeted fire was directed against the Iraqi army vehicle. And what did al-Kadhimi do against Turkey? He took a stance against Erdoğan and stood at attention like a soldier. It is obvious that the will of the Iraqi people is not represented through him. The president as well as Moqtada al-Sadr expressed a reaction. Regarding the representation of the people, these are important details that are quite positive. But why doesn’t the prime minister make a statement? Doesn’t he have to do so in his position? It is always perplexing. Even now, when the Yazidis are being targeted and facing military operations. Why? One can hardly speak of unity in such actions.

It takes common sense

We are always on the side of the Yazidi people. The PKK may not be on the ground, but our support is for the Yazidis, and it will always be that way. They have the right to build their own security structures and defend themselves. The state should agree to this. After all, self-determination is a legitimate right. I appeal to Iraq’s reason: solve the existing problems through dialogue. It must not happen that the army, of all people, which disappeared into thin air when ISIS appeared, now, after the Yazidis have freed themselves from the clutches of ISIS, proceeds with an operation against this people. I can only hope that common sense will prevail and existing problems will be eliminated through dialogue so that peace can return to Şengal. That is what is most needed in times like these. This is my hope and expectation. The resistance units YBŞ and the Asayîşa Êzîdxanê forces are legitimate and we support them. But to claim that they are all directed by the PKK is a lie by the Turkish state. No one should believe that either. A realistic approach should be in the foreground. We hope that this problem will be solved through dialogue.

Is there anything else you would like to say?

The days we are experiencing are the most difficult in the history of our struggle. It is an important phase. In what way? The war between us and the Turkish occupation has reached its peak. Of course, they want to beat us and we want to beat them.

The youth must play their role

All patriotic people, all Kurds should take a role in this time. They must fulfill their patriotic duties. Especially the youth and free women in South Kurdistan should not face this period in silence. Our people must raise their voice against the fascist and murderous policies of the Turkish state. For Kurdish youth in Turkey, in the Turkish metropolises, the moment is favorable for action. They have their own initiative. They should not say: there are no weapons. There are. They just have to find them. A lighter, for example, can also be a weapon. The possibilities are endless. Therefore, everyone should definitely take action. Our people in the dungeons are being murdered, every day passes with torture by guards. They torture the youth. I take this opportunity to remember all the martyrs of the prison resistors. I bow my head before them and the memory of them. We must rise up against oppression. We must not remain silent in the face of this injustice. Because if we remain silent, we become part of oppression. That is why we must rise up. It is necessary to oppose injustice. Therefore, my appeal is especially to the Kurdish youth to be in action in this special phase. Become active in your own places or join the ranks of the guerrillas. This is our call. A historic time has dawned in which Kurdish youth must play their role. Come to the mountains.

It is the time to take risks

Today, the guerrilla plays a historic and strategic role. Apart from the guerrillas, there is no force capable of opposing this enemy. [The enemy] wants to carry out genocide against the Kurds. Therefore, everyone should mobilize and organize themselves, and not wait for special instructions or cadres. In every neighborhood, people can organize and become a force, a committee, will, action power. Participatory power and participatory forces are important.

Last but not least, let it be said that great resistance is taking place here. Once again, I greet with all my heart my friends who are moving like lions in this war, in this fire. Certainly, I am also part of this cause, I am one of those responsible. But it is these companions, Kurdish women and men, who, with the spirit of sacrifice, take the form of Egîd [Mahsum Korkmaz, guerrilla commander who fired the first shot of the PKK in 1984]. Their devotion can hardly be put into words. It is like a jewel. On this basis, it is our ambition to be victorious in every case. We must shoulder responsibility. It is risks that we take. But it is the time when everyone must summon up the courage to go all out. This applies to me as well as to all cadres, all fighters, all commanders and patriots. But it also applies to every Kurd. In order to make 2022 a great year, everyone must make the necessary sacrifices.

We celebrated the 50th Newroz [since the first moment of the Kurdish liberation movement] this year. A great spirit revealed itself. As a continuation of this, we want 2022 to be the year of the great march with the soul of the Newroz fire and the heart of the Zap resistance. It should be the year of the freedom march. This should be the indicated direction for all. This is my call. Greetings from the bottom of my heart.