The outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) called on Turkey to agree to dialogue with their group, accusing Ankara of "double standards" since it had engaged in similar talks with Hamas. The PKK is a designated terrorist organization by the U.S. and EU.
"Why does not (Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah) Gul spend efforts to stop bloodshed in his own country? Is this not a contradiction? Maybe it is because Kurds have carried out fewer suicide attacks (than Hamas). This is double standards," senior PKK commander Murat Karayilan said in an inteview with the pro-Kurdish Firat News Agency.
Some 37,000 people have been killed since 1984 when the PKK began an armed campaign against the Ankara government for self-rule in the country's mainly Kurdish southeast. It has since abandoned its claim for statehood and is now calling for Kurdish autonomy within Turkey, an amnesty for PKK militants guaranteeing their participation in politics, and freedom for their jailed leader Abdullah Ocalan.