17 January 2019, 18:55
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    HDP delegation visited Ocalan at Imrali prison

    HDP group chairs İdris Baluken and Pervin Buldan and HDP deputy co-chair Sırrı Süreyya Önder visited PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan in İmralı Island on Sunday. After the meeting the HDP delegation issued a statement about the evaluations of Ocalan on the latest situation in the peace process and recent developments.

    According to the statement of the delegation, Ocalan said:  'the most significant reality is the fact the process has reached a new phase,' adding that: 'at the point reached there was hope for a serious beginning, and this hope must be protected and developed.'

    The delegation reported that Öcalan drew attention to the compelling factors emanating from both sides, urging them both to behave responsibly and sensitively in order to avoid provocative positions.

    Öcalan said the two sides should concentrate on making realistic and sincere proposals for a genuine beginning, and on finding ways and methods of putting these into practice.

    Meanwhile, speaking to Firat News, HDP MP Önder from the delegation informed further about the details of the meeting with Ocalan. Onder said that at Sunday's meeting Öcalan told them there had been increasingly frequent meetings with political delegations attaining a content in the last three weeks.

    Onder also told that Ocalan said there would be significant developments in the process in the coming period, adding: "in this time there will be political delegations and also talks he will have with the state delegation."

    Önder said that for the first time a programme and timetable had been discussed at a meeting between Öcalan and the state delegation, adding: "I think that the questions Mr Öcalan emphasized at the beginning of the process; such as a legal framework, the removal of obstacles to democratic politics, release of sick prisoners, ruling out Anti-Terror law, have for the first time begun to be linked to a programme and timetable.

    We can understand this to some extent from what Beşir Atalay said on Kanal 7. He stressed that the government would strive for a solution with a new programme and timetable. When all these things come together it is easy to understand what Mr Öcalan is alluding to when he says 'new phase'.

    Önder added that Öcalan had raised the request for a Monitoring Body at Sunday's meeting, saying: "he wants the process to be transparent and open to public scrutiny.

    Touching upon the upcoming presidential elections, Önder said that Öcalan had listed the principles of 'inclusiveness', 'belief in democratic politics' and 'peace development' as key for the Presidential elections.

    Önder said that Öcalan had commented on Turkish PM Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's threat to the HDP-BDP that "plans B and C would come on the agenda". Öcalan had warned: "If a plan is to be made it should be done for democracy and for peace. It shouldn't be for war."

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