Hans-Christian Ströbele – Call for the lift of the ban on the PKK

February 24



German Green Party politician Hans-Christian Ströbele has said he will support the Left Party’s proposal that the ban on the ban the PKK be lifted in Thursday’s debate in the Federal Parliament.

In spite of the effective struggle being waged by the PKK against ISIS in the Middle East, the insistence of the German government in maintaining the ban on the PKK led the Left Party to put down a motion calling for the ban to be lifted in December last year. The Federal Parliament will debate the motion in a special session on 26 February.

The Left Party (Die Linke), which with more than 70 seats in parliament is the main opposition party, will explain in parliament why the ban should be lifted.

German Green Party politician Hans-Christian Ströbele told ANF that he will support the Left Party’s proposal that the ban on the PKK be lifted in Thursday’s debate in the Federal Parliament. Ströbele stressed that the PKK ban is full of inconsistencies, as banning the Kurds who succeeded in defeating ISIS is an inconsistent policy.

‘The government’s Kurdish policy is full of inconsistencies’

Green Party deputy Ströbele recalled that when ISIS attacks on South and West Kurdistan were increasing there was a debate in Germany over whether weapons should be provided to the Kurds. He added: “The main focus of that debate was over which Kurdish groups should receive weapons and whether the PKK would benefit. We subsequently saw that some of the arms sent found their way to the PKK forces fighting ISIS.”

Ströbele quoted a report in Der Spiegel last week headlined: “German weapons in the hands of the PKK,” adding: “You give a group fighting on the same front weapons, then you ban them in this country and criminalise the Kurds here. This is an inconsistent policy.” Ströbele called on the government to lift the ban on the PKK.

‘I am hopeful regarding the peace process’

Ströbele said he was pleased that the peace process between the Turkish government and the Kurdish side was continuing. He said it was positive that a process of resolution had begun after decades of conflict. “I hope peace will be achieved and that negotiations will begin between the parties,” he added.

In September Ströbele drew attention to the contradiction inherent in the fact that PKK militants had rescued Yazidi Kurds in Sinjar, but if they came to Germany they would be arrested. The government responded, saying the PKK might have done positive things in recent times, but the ban would continue.

Who is Hans-Christian Ströbele?

76-year-old Hans-Christian Ströbele is a prominent member of the German Green Party. In the 1970s he was a lawyer who defended members of the Red Army Fraction (RAF). Since 1998 he has been a deputy in the Federal Parliament and is the only Green Party deputy who was directly elected. In 2013 he met Edward Snowden in Moscow.

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