Families visit PKK leader Ocalan and fellow inmates in Imrali prison

Family members of the jailed leader of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) Abdullah Ocalan and three other PKK-members paid the inmates a visit on Imralı island prison, the T24 news portal reported on Monday.

Turkish authorities allowed families to visit Ocalan as well as Hamili Yildirim, Omer Hayri Konar and Veysi Aktas, who are referred to as his secretariat by the pro-Kurdish media.

Ocalan’s brother Mehmet Ocalan, Yildirim’s brother Polat Yildirim, Konar’s brother Emin Konar and Aktas’ sister Salihe Saltik were granted a visit by the Bursa Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office.

However, the same prosecutor reportedly did not allow Ocalan’s lawyer Mazlum Dinc to visit him on the Imrali Island prison on Monday.

It was the second time the Turkish authorities allowed Yildirim, Konar, and Aktas to see their families since their arrests on various dates in 2015, with the first visit taking place on June 5.

The PKK, an armed militant group that launched a separatist insurgency against the Turkish state in 1984, was founded by Ocalan.

The group is labeled as a terrorist organization by the Turkish government and Ocalan has been held in solitary confinement in Imrali, an island prison in the Marmara Sea, since he was captured in 1999.

The public was informed of the visits by the Asrin Law Office through a statement posted on its official Twitter account on Monday.

In a statement released on Twitter by the Asrin Law Office, Ocalan said last week that he could put an end to the ongoing conflict between the Turkish state and PKK militants within a week.

“I can solve it, I have confidence in myself, I am ready for a solution,” he vowed, provided that Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government lives up to its side of the bargain.

Following several years of peace negotiations where Ocalan played a key role, a ceasefire broke down between the Turkish state and the PKK in 2015.

Turkey then faced some of the worst violence in the decades-long conflict that killed more than 40,000 people since 1984.

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