Kurdish singer Perver to return to Turkey after 37 years

In 2010, Perver said in an interview that he was dying to return to Turkey if the government's Kurdish initiative went well.

Kurdish singer Perver to return to Turkey after 37 years

World Bulletin/News Desk

Renowned Kurdish singer Şivan Perver, who left Turkey in 1976 after he got in trouble with the authorities for singing a song in Kurdish when he was a university student in Ankara, is preparing to come home after 37 years, he has told Turkish press.

On Wednesday, Perver spoke to Hüseyin Çelik, a deputy chairman of the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) and also the party's spokesperson in Arbil in northern Iraq. Perver has been criticized and even threatened by the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) for denouncing violence.

Çelik said he was very pleased to hear of Perver's decision to return home and said he will talk to the relevant ministers to ease his concerns regarding a possible legal problem.

The meeting between Perver and Çelik in northern Iraq took place after Perver's son, Gündüz Perver, told Çelik in northern Iraq's city of Sulaymaniyah that his father would like to see him. This is why Çelik proceeded to the city of Arbil, where Perver was at the time.

“Turkey is my home country. I have been separated from it for 37 years, and I miss it a lot. I want to return, but I have some concerns,” he reportedly told Çelik during the meeting in Arbil.

Sources have said Çelik quickly relayed the issue to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, although neither he nor Perver has given any details about the concerns he has about returning.

However, Perver said in an interview last week, “Öcalan writes letters to Qandil [PKK camp in northern Iraq] and sends messages. I expect him to release a similar message about me, and say, ‘Leave Şivan alone.''

Prime Minister Erdoğan has also responded positively to Perver's request to return, Çelik later told some journalists in Ankara.

Perver, a renowned singer in Turkey, has not been a favorite with the PKK, due to his harsh criticism of its leader, Abdullah Öcalan. He has been a frequent target of threats by the PKK and even attacks during his concerts in Europe.

In 2010, Perver said in an interview that he was dying to return to Turkey if the government's Kurdish initiative -- a new political program to address the Kurdish question the government had launched at the time -- went well.

“I couldn't come to my mother's funeral. I had siblings born to my parents after I left; there are still some whom I haven't seen.”

Perver also said former President Turgut Özal had also intended to invite him to return, according to the late singer Cem Karaca, who had a conversation with the president on the subject.

Last Mod: 03 Mayıs 2013, 10:21
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