US says ‘no talks with the PKK’

US State Department spokesperson John Kirby says no direct or indirect talks with outlawed PKK, denying earlier claim by militant group’s leader

Photo by: AA
Photo by: AA

US State Department spokesman John Kirby

US State Department spokesperson John Kirby on Monday denied the claims that the US is holding indirect talks with outlawed PKK.

“I can tell you that we are not in direct talks with the PKK – absolutely not,” Kirby said answering a question referring to PKK leader Cemil Bayik’s interview with the Telegraph  where he claimed the meetings are being held and messages are being exchanged with the US officials.

“This is a foreign terrorist organization. We don’t sit down and have talks with the PKK,” Kirby added referring to the militant group which is listed as a terrorist organisation by the US, as well as Turkey and the EU.

A top leader for outlawed PKK's umbrella organisation KCK, Bayik, had told on Monday that PKK sought US help to mediate with Turkey in efforts to bring the tensions down between the sides that are currently in fight, also asking for the US to stand a guarantor.

Another member of KCK leadership, Zubeyir Aydar, also previously called on the US to play a mediating role in establishing a dialogue with the Turkish government.

When the reporter reiterated the question this time asking whether the US and PKK are having indirect talks, Kirby said “I mean, there’s no talks with the PKK.”

“So no direct, no indirect. There’s no talks with the PKK,” Kirby finished answering the question.

PKK has increased its terror attacks recently after unilaterally ending the almost three-year-long ceasefire with Turkey on July 11, also risking the progress of Kurdish-Turkish peace process that was launched by Turkey to end the three-decade-long conflict which claimed more than 40,000 lives.

Over the course of 40 days, PKK terrorists killed at least 44 Turkish security officers in suicide bomb attacks, ambushes and assassinations across the country.

TRTWorld and agencies