ANNEX C – Chronology of the PKK

Chronology of the PKK with particular focus on events mentioned in this book Late 1973—Abdullah Öcalan decides to found his own political group.

May 18, 1977—Murder of Haki Karer in Antep.

November 27, 1978—Foundation of the PKK in the village of Fis near Diyarbakır.

Mid-1979—Öcalan leaves Turkey and begins to establish contact with Palestinian groups in Lebanon.

September 12, 1980—Military coup in Turkey. Hundreds of thousands are arrested and tortured, including most of the PKK cadres.

March 21, 1982—Mazlum Doğan, a member of the central committee of the PKK, sets his cell on fire and hangs himself in protest of the torture in the military prison no. 5, in Diyarbakır, where most of the Kurdish political prisoners are incarcerated.

May 18, 1982—Self-immolation of the PKK prisoners Ferhat Kurtay, Eşref Anyık, Necmi Önen, and Mahmut Zengin in the military prison Diyarbakır.

July 14, 1982—PKK prisoners in Diyarbakır begin a hunger strike. Central committee members Kemal Pir, Mehmet Hayri Durmuş, Akıf Yılmaz, and Ali Çiçek die before the strike ends.

August 15, 1984—Beginning of the PKK’s armed struggle with simultaneous attacks on two military posts, one in Eruh (province of Siirt) and the other in Şemdinli (province of Hakkâri).

March 21, 1985—Proclamation of the ERNK.

March 28, 1986—Mahsum Korkmaz is killed in battle under circumstances that remain unclear.

March 20, 1993—First unilateral PKK ceasefire.

May 24, 1993—Massacre of thirty-three unarmed soldiers by Şemdin Sakık, leading to the end of the ceasefire.

January 1995—At its fifth congress, the PKK removes the demand for an independent state from its program.

December 14, 1995—Second unilateral PKK ceasefire ended in May 1996 due to state violence.

September 2, 1998—Third unilateral PKK ceasefire. It was presumed that it would end when Abdullah Öcalan was abducted in Kenya and taken to Turkey, but Öcalan requested that the ceasefire continue.

October 9, 1998—Öcalan leaves Syria, arriving in Rome in November.

February 15, 1999—Öcalan is kidnapped from Nairobi, Kenya. Since then, he has been held in solitary confinement in the one-person prison on İmralı Island, which was completely evacuated for this purpose.

May 6, 1999—Beginning of the show trial against Öcalan. Öcalan expresses his sympathy for the relatives of the victims of the war. In his defense speech, he says that the mission of armed struggle has been accomplished and calls for a political solution, with the goal of a “democratic republic” for all people living in Turkey.

June 29, 1999—Öcalan is sentenced to death on the anniversary of the 1925 execution of Sheikh Said.

August 1999—On Öcalan’s recommendation all PKK armed forces withdraw from Turkey, marking the beginning of a unilateral ceasefire that will last for several years. During the withdrawal and ceasefire, more than five hundred members of the guerrilla are killed in Turkish military attacks. Up to this point, approximately forty thousand people have been killed in the war.

January 2000—At its seventh congress, the PKK decides to strategically reorient in line with Öcalan’s proposals concerning the primacy of the political struggle over the military option. The ARGK is dissolved and the HPG is founded as a defensive army to take its place.

2001—Öcalan’s essential two-volume work on the history of civilization The Roots of Civilization, and The PKK and the Kurdish Question is published. In it, he presents his ideas about the peaceful building of a democratic civilization. The PKK agrees with his ideas and confirms its commitment to “unity in freedom” with Turkey.

2002—Dissolution of the PKK and founding of the KADEK.

September 2003—Dissolution of the KADEK and founding of the Kongra Gel, which would later split as a result of internal tensions, with several hundred members gathering around Nizamettin Taş and Osman Öcalan, who advocated cooperation with the US and the Iraqi Kurdish parties.

May 2004—Publication of the Turkish original of the present book.

June 1, 2004—The 1998 unilateral ceasefire is officially ended, but no major military engagement follows.

2005—The PKK is refounded and the KKK is founded.

2006—Renewed flare-up of fighting after numerous attacks by the Turkish military.

August 2006—Prime Minister Erdoğan speaks for the first time about the Kurdish question, conceding that mistakes have been made by the state.

October 2006—The PKK declares its fifth unilateral ceasefire. Turkey responds with it most massive attack in ten years.

2007—Dissolution of the KKK and founding of the KCK.

October 2007—Massive air strikes by the Turkish army on PKK positions in South Kurdistan/North Iraq. Guerilla attacks on Turkish military positions intensify.

February 2008—Turkish ground troops invade South Kurdistan/North Iraq. After surprisingly strong resistance, there is quick withdrawal.

August 15, 2009—Öcalan finishes penning The Road Map to Negotiations, which was presented to the Turkish state for talks and only transmitted to the court at the end of 2010. It was first published in Turkish, in 2011, and then in English, in 2012.

April 13, 2009—The KCK declares a unilateral ceasefire.

June 1, 2010—End of the ceasefire. Numerous guerrilla attacks and Turkish military operations ensue.

August 2010—The KCK and the Turkish government confirm that the authorities are in “dialogue” with Öcalan. The result is the renewed cessa-tion of the armed activities beginning on August 13, 2010.

January 2013–April 2015—Abdullah Öcalan and the PKK begin one of the most serious series of talks aimed at realizing a political solution to the Kurdish question and a negotiated resolution of the conflict with the Turkish state. The talks collapse in April 2015, ushering in a new wave of violence and brutality on the part of the Turkish state and a total and aggravated isolation of Abdullah Öcalan.

January 9, 2013—Sakine Cansız, one of the founders of the PKK, and two other Kurdish women revolutionaries, Fidan Doğan and Leyla Şaylemez, are murdered in Paris, France, by the MIT (National Intelligence Organization of Turkey) just as the talks involving the Turkish state, Abdullah Öcalan, and the PKK are about to begin.

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