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 Turkey Applauds U.S. Naming PKK Leaders on Drug Traffickers List

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Turkey Applauds U.S. Naming PKK Leaders on Drug Traffickers List  21.4.2011  



April 21, 2011

ANKARA, — Turkey applauded a decision by U.S. authorities to freeze the assets of five members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.

The U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control designated Cemil Bayrak, Duran Kalkan, Remzi Kartal, Sabri Ok and Adem Uzun “specially designated narcotics traffickers,” leading to a freeze of their assets in the U.S. and making it illegal for Americans to engage in business with them, the statement said.

The five men are members of the leadership team of the PKK, the Foreign Ministry said.

Turkey expects other countries to follow suit and “carry through on their obligations” with regard to the fight against terrorism,
www.ekurd.netthe statement said. The men are still allowed residence and free travel in other countries, it said, without naming the countries.      

Since it was established in 1984, the Kurdistan Workers' Party PKK has been fighting the Turkish state, which still denies the constitutional existence of Kurds, to establish a Kurdish state in the south east of the country.

Since it was established in 1984, the Kurdistan Workers' Party PKK has been fighting the Turkish state, which still denies the constitutional existence of Kurds, to establish a Kurdish state in the south east of the country.

But now its aim is the creation an autonomous region and more cultural rights for ethnic Kurds who constitute the greatest minority in Turkey, numbering more than 20 million. A large Turkey's Kurdish community openly sympathise with the Kurdish PKK rebels.

PKK's demands included releasing PKK detainees, lifting the ban on education in Kurdish, paving the way for an autonomous democrat Kurdish system within Turkey, reducing pressure on the detained PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan, stopping military action against the Kurdish party and recomposing the Turkish constitution.

Turkey refuses to recognize its Kurdish population as a distinct minority. It has allowed some cultural rights such as limited broadcasts in the Kurdish language and private Kurdish language courses with the prodding of the European Union, but Kurdish politicians say the measures fall short of their expectations.

The PKK is considered as 'terrorist' organization by Ankara, U.S., the PKK continues to be on the blacklist list in EU despite court ruling which overturned a decision to place the Kurdish rebel group PKK and its political wing on the European Union's terror list. 

Copyright ©, respective author or news agency, bloomberg.com | ekurd.net | Agencies  

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