World Bulletin/News Desk
Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) militants will start withdrawing from Turkish territory starting May 8 as part of Turkey's settlement process, and the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) has announced that it will be assigning commissions to rural areas to oversee that the withdrawal continues smoothly.
Imprisoned PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan ordered the PKK to leave Turkey in March, following negotiations between him and Turkish officials in place since October of last year. Turkish security forces, civil society organizations and political parties have been doing their utmost to ensure that nothing goes wrong and no provocative incidents take place during the withdrawal.
The BDP has also been on alert to ensure the process goes smoothly and has set up a commission to monitor the process. BDP leader Selahattin Demirtas is also a member of the BDP's commission.
BDP deputies and other commission members will serve at stations in the rural areas of Hakkari, Cukurca, Yuksekova and Semdinli. They will also be meeting with local administrators.
The militants will leave Turkey using corridors determined by the security forces to ensure that there will be no clashes. The National Intelligence Organization (MIT) has set up an observation office in northern Iraq to make sure the withdrawal process happens without any problems.
Details of the withdrawal have not been made public. But BDP sources say the leaving militants will walk through two safety corridors: one leading to Hakurk and another one to Haftanin, both regions in northern Iraq. Later, the Iraqi Peshmerge will accompany the PKK militants in these two bases to Qandil, the main PKK camp in northern Iraq.
Following the withdrawal, the state and Ocalan are expected to enter a second phase in negotiations. The BDP and the Democratic Society Congress (DTK), which is not a political party but includes important figures for the Kurdish movement, will also have talks with the wise people delegation formed by the government. There will also be talks with inmates who have been jailed on terrorism charges as members of the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK).
It is not clear where all the militants will go after the withdrawal is complete. There are plans to send about 100 core administrative members of the PKK to northern Europe.
However, administrators who have not engaged in armed clashes can come back to Turkey and actively engage in politics.Last Mod: 03 Mayıs 2013, 11:48