Turkey has strongly criticized the European Parliament’s friendly attitude towards the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) group, including its call to halt the ongoing Operation Olive Branch in Afrin, holding the militant group’s exhibition in Brussels and hosting the group’s wanted militants.
PKK is blacklisted as terrorist group by Turkey, the European Union, and the US.
Coming to the forefront with its anti-Turkey attitude, the European Parliament members usually make statements and attempts against Ankara, ignoring the country’s security concerns and international interests.
On Thursday, the European Parliament drafted a motion calling on Turkey to withdraw its troops from Syria’s Afrin region.
European Parliament’s motion, calling on Turkey to stop Operation Olive Branch, has been seen in the country as a reflection of the European Parliament members’ closeness to PKK, which is in the EU terrorist watch list.
The PYD/PKK is the Syrian branch of the terrorist group PKK, which is responsible for over 40,000 deaths, in a violent campaign against Turkey for more than 30 years.
PKK ringleaders, including wanted terrorists are attending conferences as speakers held under the name of ‘International Kurdish Conference’ by the European Parliament every year.
In such conferences, calls for removal of the PKK from terror watch lists and release of PKK’s jailed head Abdullah Ocalan are made.
Former co-leader of PYD/PKK terrorist group Salih Muslum and one of the PKK/KCK ringleaders in Europe Zubeyir Aydar attended to the conference in 2016; Aydar has been accused of being a senior member of the PKK’s European arm.
Turkey has declared the PKK a terrorist organization and has banned it. The militant group has been seeking an autonomous Kurdish region since 1984.
A shaky ceasefire between the PKK and the Turkish government collapsed in July 2015. Attacks on Turkish security forces have soared ever since.
Over the past few months, Turkish ground and air forces have been carrying out operations against the PKK positions in the country’s southeastern border region as well as in northern Iraq and neighboring Syria.
More than 40,000 people have been killed during the three-decade conflict between Turkey and the autonomy-seeking militant group.