Turkey’s ‘wise men’ call for cease-fire

Turkey’s ‘wise men’ delegation gather in Istanbul, declare statement calling both sides to stop battle

Photo by: AA
Photo by: AA

The “wise men” delegation, a consultative committee dedicated to Turkey’s Resolution Process, gathered at a meeting in Istanbul to discuss the recent events including PKK’s attacks and the operations of Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) inside and outside Turkey.

The wise men delegation was initiated by Turkey’s governing Justice and Development Party (AK Party) in April 2013 to bring a final solution to the social problems in Turkey.

The group includes respected intellectuals, civil society leaders, businessmen, and politicians, selected by the government, scanning the whole spectrum of Turkish society.

Ten members of the wise men delegation released a statement after the meeting, saying “the guns shall stop immediately.”

The delegation including actor Kadir Inanir, journalists Ali Bayramoglu and Oral Calislar, lawyer Kezban Hatemi and activist Ozturk Turkdogan met in a restaurant without any call or request from politicians, Calislar said.

“We, the wise men, gathered voluntarily as a group, conscientiously and democratically calling on the public from both sides, the media and those who are responsible, to: Stop weapon use and maintain cease-fire as previously,” said Bayramoglu.

“Both sides must keep away from using challenger, discriminatory and accusive jargon,” he added.

In early 2013, the Turkish government launched the Kurdish-Turkish Peace Process as part of the country’s Resolution Process which began in 2012 to end the decades-old conflict with the PKK.

The PKK was founded in the late 1970s by its now jailed leader Abdullah Ocalan, and is recognised as a terrorist organisation by Turkey, NATO and the EU.

The Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK), an umbrella organisation which gathers all members and activities of the outlawed PKK, issued a statement on July 11, saying that the truce which was reached during the Resolution Process has ended, threatening Turkey with attacks.

Until Sunday, at least 24 Turkish security officials have been killed in terror attacks mostly carried out by the outlawed PKK in Turkey since KCK's statement.

On July 24, Turkish F-16 fighter jets began to hit positions used by ISIS and PKK in Syria and northern Iraq.

The operations targeted PKK camps, shelters, caves and logistics points in Zap, Metina, Gara, Avasin-Basyan, Sinath Haftanin, Hakurk and Qandil which are located in the mountainous northern Iraq region.

More than 260 militants have been killed and more than 360 injured in airstrikes conducted by the Turkish military while 10 militants have been killed and two are injured in ground operations.

TRTWorld and agencies